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LIEUTENANT-COLONEL 

JOHN    HAUGHTON 


aJb&n  <c^vJ'2*«tf  7CCf^ 


LIEUTENANT-COLONEL 

JOHN    HAUGHTON 

Commandmit  of  the  2>^th  Sikhs 


A   HERO   OF  TIRAH 


A    Memoir 


BY 

MAJOR  A.   C.  lYATE 

2ND   (DUKE  OF  CONNAUGHT's  OWN)   BALUCH   BATTALION 
F.R.G.S. 

AUTHOR   OF    "  ENGLAND   AND   KUSSIA    FACE   TO   FACE   IN   ASIA," 
ETC. 


"  In  all  retirements  he  stuck  doggedly  to  the  rear-guard  until  he  saw 
the  last  of  his  column  safely  out  of  danger.' 

"  LUMSDliN   OF  THE  GUIDES,"  p.  120. 


LONDON 

JOHN    MURRAY,    ALBEMARLE    STREET 

1900 


LONDON : 

PRINTED   BY  WILLIAM   CLOWES   AND   SONS,    LIMITED, 

STAMFORD  STREET   AND   CHARING   CROSS. 


<: 


Shrewsbury  School. 


Founded  1551. 


Uppingham  School. 


Founded  1584. 


O 
CD 


THIS   MEMOIR   IS,  BY   PERMISSION, 


1? 


HEAD-MASTERS 

OF 

SHREWSBURY  AND    UPPINGHAM    SCHOOLS, 

AT  WHICH   GENERAL  JOHN   COLPOYS   HAUGHTON 

AND  LIEUT.-COLONEL  JOHN   HAUGHTON 

WERE    RESPECTIVELY 

EDUCATED. 


357321 


PREFACE. 


In  these  days,  when  reviewers  ring  out  their 
clang  of  warning  against  the  flood  of  memorial 
literature,  to  swell  the  current  without  a  cause 
would  be  worse  than  waste.  The  waters  must  be 
waters  of  life,  and  the  source  must  be  pure,  that 
those  who  drink  thereof  may  profit  thereby.  Popu- 
larity is  seductive,  but  not  always  a  gauge  of  literary 
merit,  gentle  bearing,  or  good  taste.  It  is  these  alone 
that  bear  the  test  of  time  ;  and  it  is  on  time  that  we 
may  rely  to  show  (for  instance)  that  "  Tom  Brown's 
Schooldays,"  and  not  "Stalky  &  Co.,"  portrays  the 
characters,  the  principles,  and  the  manners  which 
we  desire  as  examples  for  our  boys. 

During  the  War  in  South  Africa,  some  of  our 
best-known  military  critics,  and  notably  Mr.  Spenser 
Wilkinson,  have  dwelt  on  the  fact  that  the  average 
British  officer  is  in  no  sense  a  serious  student  of  his 
profession.  It  is  possible  that  the  Memoir  may 
appeal  to  that  officer    in    a    way  that  the    Manual 


vni  PREFACE. 

apparently  does  not  do.  It  is  essential  that  the 
examples  of  our  best  soldiers  should  be  set  before 
the  Army — not  only  of  those  who  have  attained 
high  rank  and  held  onerous  commands,  but  also  of 
those  who  have  distinguished  themselves  in  less 
prominent  capacities.  It  is  the  many  juniors  who, 
under  the  few  Generals,  win  our  battles.  It  is  said 
that  the  non-commissioned  officers  are  the  backbone 
of  the  battalion.  I  venture,  then,  to  say  that  the 
Commanding  Officer  stiffens  that  backbone.  The 
"  selection "  of  a  Commanding  Officer  is  a  matter 
of  the  first  importance;  and  all  those  who  take 
a  thorough  interest  in  the  Army  must  always 
devoutly  pray  for  the  guidance  of  those  in 
whose  hands  "  selection  "  lies,  and  for  their 
delivery  from  the  many  temptations  that  beset 
"  selection." 

When  we  do  find  a  Commanding  Officer  who 
has  risen  to  that  post,  without  favour  or  affection, 
who  in  that  post  has  won  the  more  than  regard  and 
respect  of  those  under  him,  and  who  has  personified 
a  very  high  ideal  of  coolness,  capacity  for  command, 
courage,  and  devotion,  the  example  of  that  man 
ought  not  to  be  lost  to  Her  Majesty's  Army.  It  is 
one  that  every  soldier  may  do  well  to  know  and 
follow,  and  it  is  one  that  every  parent  may  set 
before  a  soldier  son.  On  Lieut.-Colonel  John 
Haughton  the  mantle  of  his  father  had  fallen.     Both 


PREFACE.  IX 

father  and  son  were,  in  every  sense  of  the  word, 
gallant  and  good  men.  Yet  to-day  Lieutenant  John 
Colpoys  Haughton,  the  staunch  defender  of  Charikar 
in  1 84 1,  is  known  but  to  the  few  serious  students 
of  Indian  Frontier  warfare  ;  while,  to  my  knowledge, 
the  name  of  Lieut-Colonel  John  Haughton  is,  within 
three  years  of  his  noble  death  at  Shinkamar, 
"  caviare  to  the  general,"  which,  being  interpreted, 
is  "  a  dead  letter  to  the  man  in  the  street,"  Never- 
theless, the  name  of  John  Haughton  is  worthy  to 
stand  by  that  of  John  Nicholson,  as  one  who  gave 
himself  without  stint  for  his  country  and  for  his 
brethren-in-arms.  The  two  men  present  strong 
points  of  resemblance,  in  their  fine  physique,  in 
their  great  influence  over  natives,  in  their  grand 
moral  qualities,  and  in  their  fearlessness  of  danger. 

My  chief  and  best  fellow- worker  in  writing  this 
Memoir  has  been  Colonel  Haughton's  widow.  I  am 
also  indebted  for  information  and  help  to  Mrs.  J.  C. 
Haughton,  and  Mrs.  Richard  Haughton,  Colonel 
C.  H.  Palmer,  Lieut-General  Sir  G.  B.  Wolseley, 
Major  Gunning  Hunter  of  the  loth  "  Jats,"  and  to 
several  other  officers  who  prefer  to  be  incogniti ; 
also  to  several  of  the  Masters  and  old  boys  of 
Uppingham  School. 

The  conviction,  confirmed  if  not  engendered  by 
Dr.  Warre's  lecture  at  the  Royal  United  Service 
Institution    on    the     27th    June    last,    of    the    very 


X  PREFACE. 

important  part  that  Public  Schools  might,  nay,  ought 
to  take  in  the  military  training  of  the  youth  of  the 
upper  and  middle  classes  of  the  Nation,  made  me 
desirous  of  associating  this  book  with  the  two  Public 
Schools,  Shrewsbury  and  Uppingham,  at  which 
General  J.  C.  Haughton  and  his  son  had  been 
respectively  educated.  The  courtesy  and  kindness 
of  the  Head-masters  of  those  Schools,  the  Rev. 
Prebendary  H.  W.  Moss  and  the  Rev.  E.  C. 
Selwyn,  B.D.,  have  enabled  me  to  gratify  this  wish. 
Sir  Philip  Sidney  and  Sir  Claude  MacDonald — the 
one  the  preux  chevalier  of  his  period,  and  the  first 
and  foremost  of  the  soldiers  educated  at  Shrewsbury, 
the  other  the  staunch  defender  of  the  British  Lega- 
tion at  Peking,  and  the  most  distinguished  of  the 
recent  accessions  to  the  Honour- Roll  of  Uppingham 
— are,  so  to  speak,  the  first  and  last  links  in  a 
chain  that  unites  the  earlier  years  of  our  great 
Queen  Elizabeth  with  the  later  years  of  our  still 
greater  Queen  Victoria.  A  Public  School  and  its 
ahumii  possess  a  reciprocal  power  of  action  and 
reaction,  which  is  the  mainspring  of  the  great  influ- 
ence that  Public  Schools  exercise  on  the  manhood 
of  the  Nation.  I  am  proud  to  acknowledge  the 
debt  I  owe  to  Shrewsbury. 

In  addition  to  private  sources  of  information, 
I  have,  by  the  courtesy  of  the  Editor,  made 
use   of  the   special    correspondence    in    the    Times 


PREFACE.  XI 

of  India  from  September,  1897,  to  February,  1898. 
I  have  also  consulted  the  books  published  by 
Captain  Shadwell,  Colonel  Hutchinson,  and  Mr. 
Lionel  James,  and  by  the  Pioneer  and  Civil  and 
Military  Gazette  Presses.  I  am  indebted  to  the 
Rev.  Father  Mansfield,  Roman  Catholic  chaplain 
at  Peshawar,  for  the  photograph  of  the  grave 
and  monument  in  the  cemetery  there,  and  to  the 
Rev.  G.  H.  Mullins  for  that  of  the  memorial 
tablet  placed  by  the  35th  and  36th  Sikhs  in  Upping- 
ham School  Chapel.  Some  of  the  smaller  illustra- 
tions are  from  photographs  taken  by  Colonel 
Haughton  himself  For  others  I  am  indebted  to 
Messrs.  Law  Brothers  of  Ambala,  Dr.  A.  H. 
Brown  of  Amritsar,  and  one  or  two  other  persons. 
Good  photographs  of  scenes  in  Tirah  I  have  found 
difficult  to  procure.  The  map  of  Tirah  is  based  on 
the  best  authorities  available. 

In  the  Introduction  and  in  Chapters  I.  and  II. 
I  have  sought  to  show  the  sources  from  which  Lieut.- 
Colonel  John  Haughton  derived  or  inherited  the  high 
qualities  of  military  leadership  that  he  displayed  in 
Tirah,  at  the  same  time  giving  an  account  of  his 
ancestry,  and  of  his  father's  distinguished  career. 
In  Chapters  III.,  IV.,  and  V.  I  have  dealt  with  his 
early  days,  and  with  the  first  twenty-five  years  of 
his  service,  from  1872  to  1897.  In  Chapters  VI.  to 
XL  I  have  related  the  deeds  that  won  him  fame. 


XII  PREFACE. 

The  last  Chapter  is  a  rdsumd  of  ideas  suggested  by 
recent  warfare  and  the  condition  of  the  British 
Army.  Appendix  A  gives  Colonel  Haughton's 
impressions  of  the  Tirah  campaign,  written  while 
every  event  was  fresh  in  his  mind,  and  just  a 
fortnight  before  his  death. 

As  regards  Oriental  names,  I  have  adopted  that 
spelling  which  I  considered  would  be  understood 
by  all.  When  I  quote  other  persons'  writings,  I  do 
not  alter  their  spelling  of  names. 


A.  C.  YATE. 


WooDHiLL  Place,  Bath, 
September  2,  1900. 


CONTENTS. 


CHAPTER  PAGE 

Introduction     ...          ...          ...          ...  ...       i 

I.    The  Haughton  and  Presgrave  Families     ...  12 

II.    General  John  Colpoys  Haughton         ...  ...      27 

III.  John  Haughton's  Early  Days          ...           ...  62 

IV.  Marriage  and  After      ...           ...           ...  ...      78 

V.    Preferment...           ...           ...           ...           ...  96 

VI.    The  Defence  of  the  Samana  Forts      ...  ...    109 

VII.    Raising  the  "Pardah"  of  Tirah     ...           ...  141 

VIII.    Saran-Sar  and  Tseri-Kandao    ...           ...  ...     150 

IX.    The  Reconnaissance  to  Dwatoi      ...           ...  169 

X.    The  March  down  the  Bara  Valley      ...  ...    180 

XI.    Rest  and  Death       ...           ...           ...           ...  194 

XII.    L'Envoi  ...           ...           ...           ...           ...  ...    206 

Appendix  A.— Letter  from  John    Haughton  to 

Sir  Charles  Gough       ...           ...           ...  221 

Appendix  B.—"  Shink.\mar— January  29,  189S"  ...    227 

Appendix  C— An  Ambulance  Reserve  for  India     229 


Index 


233 


LIST  OF   ILLUSTRATIONS. 


TO    FACE   TAGE 

LlEUT.-COLONEL  JOHN  Haughton  {Photogravure)  Frontispiece 

The  First  Suspension  Bridge  in  India,  built  over  the 
Beas  River  by  Colonel  Duncan  Presgrave.  {Frotn 
an  old  photograph  by  Lie^it. -Colonel  John  Haughton)         ...       19 

An  Afridi  Tower    ...  ...  ...  ...  ...  40 

Lieut.-General  J.  C.  Haughton,  C.S.I.  (Photogravure)   ...      54 

Memorial  Brass  in  the  Chapel  of  Uppingham  School       65 

Officers  of  the  36TH   Sikhs.     Tirah,   1897.     (Taken  at 

Karappa  Camp,  Oct.  27,  1897)  ...  ...  ...  107 

Native  Officers  of  the  36TH  Sikhs.    Tirah,  1897        ...     108 

Fort  Lockhart.  (From  Saragarhi,  showing  the  inter- 
vening Country,  which  Colonel  Haughton  had  to 
traverse  to  relieve  Saragarhi)    ...  ...  ...     129 

The  Ruins  of  Saragarhi.     (From  photographs  by  Lieut.- 

Colotiel  J ohti  Haughton)    ...  ...  ...  ...  130 

Fort  Gulistan,  showing  Sortie  Gate  through  which 

Havildar  Kala  Singh  led  his  Sortie        ...  ...     132 

Gulistan,  or  Fort  Cavagnari        ...  ...  ...  132 

The    Survivors   of  the    Sortie  Parties   at   Gulistan. 

(From  photographs  by  Lieut. -Colonel  John  Haughton)  140 

The  Camp  of  the  Tirah  Field  Force  at  Maidan        ...     149 

This  Panorama  is  a  Continuation,  to  the  Right,  of 
that  shown  in  the  Preceding  Illustration,  entitled 
"The  Camp  at  Maidan"     ...  ...  ...  ...     150 

The  Mosque  at  Bagh  in  Tirah.    (The  Afridi  Hou.si:  of 

Assembly)  ...  ...  ...  ...  ...  152 


XVI  LIST  OF  ILLUSTRATIONS. 

TO    FACE    FAGE 

Fort  Saragarpii  in  Ruins,  showing  the  Main  Entrance 

AND  Fort  Lockhart  in  the  Distance         ...  ...     157 

Brigadier-General  Richard  Westmacott  and  Staff. 
{Fro/n  a  photograph  taken  in  Tirah  by  Lieiit.-Colonel  John 
Hmighton)  ...  ...  ...  ...  ...  157 

The  Pulpit,  with  Lampstand  and  Collecting-Box  com- 
bined, of  Mulla  Sayad  Akear.  {Taken  in  the  camp, 
Maidan)         ...  ...  ...  ...  ...  ...     159 

Tseri-Kandao  Pas.s.  Scene  of  Haughton's  Defence  on 
THE  Night  of  the  i6th  of  November.  Gordons 
halted  in  the  Foreground      ...  ...  ...  160 

The  Dwatoi  Defile.    (General  Westmacott's  Brigade 

MARCHING  through   IT)  ...  ...  ...  ...      172 

A  TiRAH  "Dog-Kennel"      ...  ...  ...  ...  176 

Dwatoi.  {From  a  photograph  by  Lieut.-ColonclJ  ohn  Haiighton)     176 

DWATOI.     {Taken  from  Rajgnl)      ...  ...  ...  ...     181 

Last  and  Worst  Block  of  Baggage  in  the  Bara  River 

AT  Galai  Khel...  ...  ...  ...  ...  186 

Monument  in  Peshawar  Cemetery       ...  ...  ...    205 

Afridi  Jirgah  at  Jamrud,  January,  1898    ...  ...  222 


MAPS. 


Plan  of  Chareekar,  from  Account  given  by  Moteeram 
Havildar,  and  filled  in  from  Colonel  Haughton's 
Recollections  of  the  Place  ...  ...  ...      35 

Map  of  Tirah  ...  ...  ...  ...  At  the  end 

Map  of  the  Samana  Range      ...  ...  ...  „       „ 

Map  of  Saran-sar,  Waran  Valley,  and  Dwatoi         „ 


LIEUTENANT-COLONEL 

JOHN     HAUGHTON. 

INTRODUCTION. 

PART    I. 

"  The  right  faith  of  man  is  not  intended  to  give  him  repose,  but  to 
enable  him  to  do  his  work.  It  is  not  intended  that  he  should  look 
away  from  the  place  he  lives  in  now,  and  cheer  himself  with  thoughts 
of  the  place  he  is  to  live  in  next,  but  that  he  should  look  straight  into 
this  world,  in  faith  that  if  he  does  his  work  thoroughly  here,  some 
good  to  others  or  himself,  with  which,  however,  he  is  not  at  present 
concerned,  will  come  of  it  hereafter."— Author  Unknown. 

While  engaged,  eighteen  months  ago,  in  collecting 
and  studying  the  material  for  a  memoir  of  Lieut.- 
Colonel  John  Haughton,  I  for  the  first  time  read 
with  due  attention  the  defence  of  Charikar  in 
November,  1841.  I  had  been  inquiring  in  my  own 
mind  whence  Colonel  Haughton  had  derived  the 
inborn  qualities  which  won  for  him  fame.  I  knew 
that  he  had  seen  no  active  service  before  Tirah  ; 
and  yet,  amid  a  host  of  frontier  officers  of  long 
experience,  he  stood  forth  conspicuous  as  the  man 
who  knew  how  to  foil  the  Afridis  at  their  own 
game.  After  reading  the  story  of  his  father's 
defence    of   Charikar,    I  felt   that   the    secret    was 


2  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

revealed.  It  was  a  case  of  hereditary  intuition. 
The  following  extract  from  a  letter  written  to  me 
by  Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer  in  the  autumn  of  1899, 
independently  confirms  this  view  : — 

"Again  you  put  it  to  me — how  John  Haughton  learnt 
to  fight  the  frontier  tribesmen.  I  cannot  really  tell  you. 
He  certainly  could  not  have  learnt  it  with  us,  for  we  saw 
no  service  while  he  was  with  us  ;  but  (this  is  only  viy  way 
of  accounting  for  it)  Jack  was  a  soldier  born,  he  was 
always  reading  useful  accounts  of  campaigns,  and  I  expect 
his  father  told  him  much  of  his  experiences  ;  and  further, 
I  think  there  is  a  sort  of  '  instinct '  in  some  men,  as  well  as 
in  mere  animals,  beyond  the  ordinary,  or  rather  extra- 
ordinary human  knowledge,  which  makes  one  man  '  all 
there^  under  certain  circumstances,  where  another  man  of 
apparently  equal  mental  calibre  is  an  utter  failure,  and 
worse  than  useless  {i.e.  like  a  dead  man  in  a  boat),  and  I 
think  Jack  had  this  instinct ;  and  further.  Jack  so  thoroughly 
knew  and  studied  the  characters  of  all  natives  he  came  in 
contact  with,  and  when  you  really  knoiv  one  native,  or  at 
any  rate  several  of  different  castes  and  *  jats,'  *  you  can  pretty 
well  know  what  they  will  be  likely  to  do  in  certain  circum- 
stances on  service  or  otherwise.  This,  as  I  say  again,  is 
only  my  way  of  accounting  for  Jack's  being  such  a  glorious 
success  at  the  '  first  time  of  asking,'  for  it  was  his  first 
active  service,  and  I  feel  sure  he  would  have  been  just  as 
great  a  success  against  any  enemy,  white  or  black,  had  his 
life  been  spared." 

A  year  ago,  the  Memoir  of  "  Lumsden  of  the 
Guides  "  came  into  my  hands.  I  read  there  of  the 
Paladins  of  frontier  warfare — Sir   Colin   Campbell, 

*  I.e.  sorts. 


HIS   GUIDING   PRINCIPLE.  3 

Sir  Sydney  Cotton,  Sir  Harry  Lumsden,  Sir  Neville 
Chamberlain,  and  others.  One  sentence  that  spoke 
volumes  for  Sir  Colin  Campbell  (the  General  whom 
Lord  Dalhousie  constrained  to  resign  his  frontier 
command  at  Peshawar,  and  thus,  unwittingly,  paved 
for  him  a  path  to  fame  and  a  peerage)  I  deter- 
mined to  place  on  the  title-page  of  this  volume  ; 
for,  if  there  was  one  guiding  principle  which 
Colonel  Haughton  exemplified,  it  was — Stand  by 
the  rearguard  to  the  last.  He  proved  his  fidelity 
to  it  at  Saran-sar,  at  Tseri-Kandao,  in  the  Dwatoi 
defile,  and  in  the  march  down  the  Bara  Valley; 
and  he  sealed  it  with  his  blood  at  Shinkamar.  It 
was  his  motto,  and  for  that  man  can  do  no  more 
than  die,  if  fate  so  wills. 

I  could  not  mention  here  all  the  friends  of 
Colonel  Haughton  whose  sympathy  and  help  and 
more  than  kindly  letters  have  encouraged  me  to 
write  this  memoir.  Some  do  not  wish  to  be  named. 
It  was  good  to  read  those  letters  and  realize 
how  much  a  man  and  a  soldier  can  make  himself 
esteemed,  respected,  and  beloved.  There  is  in  it 
a  lesson  not  to  be  forgotten.  Only  one  or  two  of 
these  letters,  and  some  extracts  from  others,  can 
appear  in  this  volume  ;  but  some  of  them  will 
remain  as  an  heirloom  to  be  treasured  by  those  to 
whom  his  memory  is  dearest.  No  man's  life  has 
been  spent  in  vain  who  has  inspired  such  friendship 
and  such  high  esteem  as  Colonel  Haughton  did,  and 
who  has  left  such  an  example  for  those  who  come 
after  him. 


4  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

It  is  one  of  the  kindly  features  of  the  usually 
sombre  and  often  distasteful  aspect  of  war,  that  it 
reveals  such  characters  as  his — men  who  stand  a 
head  and  shoulders  (I  speak  metaphorically,  and  not 
in  allusion  to  Haughton's  six  feet  six  inches)  above 
their  fellow-men.  It  is  refreshing  to  turn  from 
bickering  and  recrimination — in  which  the  Tirah 
expedition  was  too  fruitful — to  the  study  of  a 
character  which  never  stooped  to  the  methods  of 
meaner,  though  possibly,  in  the  world's  sight,  more 
successful  men.*  Haughton  never  asked  for  any- 
thing. He  was  content  to  do  his  duty  in  that  state 
in  which  it  pleased  superior  authority  to  place  him. 
In  all  his  letters  to  his  most  intimate  correspondent, 
his  father,  there  is  never  a  note  of  discontent.  He 
was  not  a  man  of  grievances.  He  did  his  work 
steadily  and  quietly,  and  one  day,  to  his  surprise 
and  gratification,  found  he  was  appreciated.  From 
that  time  (1885)  his  preferment  was  rapid.  In  nine 
years  he  rose  from  a  wing  officer  to  the  command 
of  a  crack  native  regiment. 

His  existing  letters  to  his  father  cover  only 
the  period  from  1880  to  September,  1887,  when 
his  father  died.  To  him  he  could  write  on  every 
Indian  topic — his  own  career,  the  conditions  of  the 

*  The  latter,  as  a  rule,  pass  into  oblivion,  while  the  names  of  the 
nobler  live.  Many  great  Indian  soldiers  have  been  under  the  ban 
of  superior  authority.  Henry  Lawrence,  Colin  Campbell,  Charles 
Napier,  all  incurred  the  displeasure  of  Lord  Dalhousie.  James 
Outram  and  Henry  Durand  were  both  under  a  cloud  for  a  time. 
Havelock  got  little  preferment,  but  lived  long  enough  for  deathless 
fame.  Even  John  Nicholson  was  no  favourite  with  John  Lawrence. 
These  are  a  few  instances. 


A    NAME  REVERED.  5 

service,  and  every  phase  of  official  and  political  ad- 
ministration. With  his  father's  death  these  letters 
cease.  It  is  a  remarkable  thing,  and  indicative  of 
the  innate  sympathy  that  existed  between  father 
and  son,  that  the  two  wrote  to  each  other  as  if  they 
had  lived  together  all  their  lives ;  the  fact  being 
that  the  son  had  scarcely  seen  his  father  at  all. 
The  most  perfect  confidence  existed  between  them. 
Of  his  life  in  Russia,  and  while  employed  in  the 
Intelligence  Division  of  the  War  Office,  and  in  the 
35th  and  36th  Sikhs,  we  have  little  or  no  record 
from  his  own  pen.  It  is  not  until  the  last  six 
months  of  his  life  that  his  letters  from  the  Samana 
Range  and  from  Tirah  recommence,  to  form  a  more 
or  less  connected  narrative  of  what  he  did  and  what 
he  thouQfht.  In  his  own  letters  and  those  of  his 
relatives  and  friends  exists  a  lasting  testimony  to 
his  worth  as  a  soldier,  a  gentleman,  a  husband,  a 
son,  and  a  friend.  One  brief  quotation  I  will 
venture  to  make  here.  It  is  from  a  letter  written 
to  me  in  July,  1899,  by  Major  Dillon,  an  officer 
who  has  himself  won  distinction  in  the  frontier 
warfare  of  India.     It  ends  with  these  words  : 

"  All  the  officers  in  garrison,  and  they  were  many, 
attended  his  (Haughton's)  funeral  at  Peshawar  who  could  ; 
for  his  name  had  become  a  talisman,  and  to  many,  as  he 
was  to  myself,  he  was  a  dear  personal  friend.  His  name 
is  still  revered  in  his  regiment,  where  he  is  talked  about 
in  the  native  ranks  as  something  quite  beyond  the  ordinary 
Sahib." 


JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


PART   II. 


In  the  simplest  episodes  of  life  the  truth  is  a 
truant  that  almost  defies  search.  In  war  it  is  either 
magnified  by  romance,  or  lost  amid  the  confusion 
of  conflict.  The  human  senses  unaided  are  but 
imperfect  recorders  of  facts ;  and  what  they  do 
record  is  distorted  by  personal  predilection  and  bias. 
Science  has  introduced  us  to  two  forces,  photography 
and  electricity,  which,  when  more  fully  developed, 
promise  to  supply  the  defects  of  the  human  senses, 
and  which  have  no  choice  but  to  record  the  truth. 
Already  the  one  reveals  objects  which  the  human 
eye  is  powerless  to  reflect ;  while  by  the  other, 
sound  and  scene  are  recorded  and  reproduced. 
These  two  forces  combined  have  now  been  adapted 
to  the  reproduction  of  every  form  of  action  and 
motion.  It  remains  to  utilize  them  to  represent 
exactly  the  living  scenes  of  war.  We  shall  then 
know  war  as  it  is,  not  as  the  imaginations  of  war- 
artists  depict  it  in  our  illustrated  weeklies  and  on  the 
walls  of  the  Academy.  Dargai  inspired  two  paintings 
exhibited  in  1898.  Both  were  impossible.  Photo- 
graphy, indeed,  has  given  us  true  pictures  of  the 
scene  of  that  action,  though  not  of  the  action  itself. 
Already  that  art  reproduces  for  us  many  of  the 
stiller  scenes  of  a  campaign.  Instruments  are  only 
needed  to  recreate  the  stirrinof  strueele  of  the  battle- 
field,  and  even  that  has  been  done  to  some  extent 
during  the  recent  South  African  War.     Till  those 


TRUTH  AND   FICTION  IN   WAR.  7 

instruments  are  perfected,  human  reason  must  en- 
deavour to  tone  down  the  colouring  of  romance, 
and  to  sift  truth  from  fiction.  How  hard  that  is, 
may  be  gathered  from  the  controversial  literature 
to  which  the  Waterloo  campaign  has  given  rise. 
For  instance,  excellent  evidence,  including  that  of 
the  Great  Duke  himself,  can  be  adduced  to  show 
that  Wellington  did  and  did  not  ride  over  to 
Bluchers  quarters  at  Wavre  on  the  night  of  the 
17th  June.  As  for  the  far-famed  order,  "Up, 
Guards,  and  at  them  ! "  it  has,  long  ago  (together 
with  Cambronne's  "  La  Garde  meurt  mais  ne  se 
rend  pas,"  Charles  Napier's  "  Peccavi,"  and  Sir 
George  Pollock's  "Advance  Nott"),  passed  into 
the  realm  of  myths,*  whither  it  seems  in  time  likely 
to  be  followed  by  the  words  which  Colonel  Mathias 
is  said  to  have  addressed  to  the  Gordon  Highlanders 
before  the  final  assault  on  Dargai.  Of  five  different 
accounts  of  that  hard-fought  action  which  have 
appeared  in  books  alone,  one  does  not  mention  the 
words  at  all,  another  reels  out  a  long  and  impossible 
rigmarole,  while  the  remaining  three  are  far  from 
agreeing  as  to  the  words  used.  And  this  within 
a  few  months  of  the  event !  j    When  we  read  the  life 

*  Pace  the  Times  (August  18,  1900),  "the  Duke's  old  saying  about 
the  Playing-Fields  at  Eton  has  "  not  yet  "  done  its  work."  On  the 
contrary,  they  and  those  of  the  other  schools  of  England  should  furnish 
the  primary  instruction  in  that  knowledge,  the  cultivation  of  which  the 
Commander-in-Chief  of  the  Army  enjoined  on  the  occasion  of  his 
visit  to  Aldershot. 

t  If  we  consider  for  one  moment  the  conditions  under  which  these 
words  are  said  to  have  been  spoken,  we  must  realize  that  an  authori- 
tative record  of  them   is  scarcely   possible.     The   gallantry   of  the 


8  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

of  such  a  soldier  as  Sir  Charles  MacGregor  (twice 
wounded  in  the  Mutiny,  five  times  wounded  and 
specially  recommended  for  gallantry  in  China, 
twice  wounded  in  Bhutan),  and  reflect  that  he  never 
received  the  Victoria  Cross,  we  begin  to  doubt 
whether  that  reward  for  bravery  always  goes  to 
those  who  have  best  deserved  it.  At  Colenso 
recently  the  curious  distinction  was  drawn  between 
the  soldier  who  was  brave  "  by  order  "  and  "  without 
order."  The  courage  of  a  Haughton  was  instinctive. 
The  defence  of  Charikar  by  the  young  subaltern  of 
twenty-four  was  a  test  of  bravery  and  endurance 
with  which  no  momentary  flash  of  daring  can  com- 
pare ;  while  the  memory  of  John  Haughton  at  Tseri 
Kandao,  at  Dwatoi,  and  at  Shinkamar,  will  be 
handed  down  as  a  tradition  of  cool  courage  and 
steadfast  valour.  Neither  father  nor  son,  however, 
was  decorated  with  the  Victoria  Cross. 

It  is  more  than  probable  that  no  critical  history 
of  the  Tirah  campaign  will  be  published  for  another 
quarter  of  a  century.  The  first  volume  of  the  first 
elaborated  history  of  the  Afghan  War  of  1878-81 
has  only  recently  appeared.  This  fin-de-sihle  era 
abounds  in  histories  and  memoirs,  Napoleonic, 
Crimean,  Mutiny,  etc.  The  middle  of  the  twentieth 
century,  when  all  eye-witnesses  are  numbered  with 
the   dead,    though    peradventure    they   may   leave 

Gordons  and  their  Colonel  on  this  memorable  day  needs  no  halo  of 
sentiment,  and  history  will  not  accept  a  mere  fiction  of  journalism 
playing  to  the  gallery.  The  words  used  can  only  be  authenticated 
by  him  who  spoke  them  and  by  those  who  heard  them  spoken,  if 
indeed  memory  in  such  moments  takes  heed  of  words. 


PRIMUS  INTER   PARES.  9 

diaries   and    memoirs   behind    them,   will    probably 
produce    the    first   history  of   the    frontier  fighting 
of  1897.     It  will  then  be  a  tangled  web  to  unravel. 
Though,  as  I  have  mentioned,  five  narratives  of  the 
Tirah  expedition    have   already  appeared,  none  of 
them  can  claim  the  status  of  history ;  albeit,  in  years 
to  come  they  will  be  the  stand-by  of  the  historian. 
They  have  told  to  Englishmen  all  the  world  over 
the  unflinching  gallantry  and  fortitude  with  which 
Her  Majesty's  troops,  British  and   Native,  carried 
out  their  duty  from  first  to  last  throughout  one  of 
the  most  trying  frontier  campaigns  that  the  army 
of  India  has   ever  faced.     Severe   weather,   chilly 
marches   and    chillier   bivouacs   without   tents   and 
at  times  without   food,  reconnaissance,  forage  and 
convoy  duties    in   an    intricate   country  and    along 
most    difficult    paths    or    tracks,    and    fighting    at 
every  step  whether   in  advance  or  retreat, — these 
briefly    summarize    the   chief    features    of    a    two 
months'    campaign.      The   enemy   never   stood    to 
fight,   but   harried   our   troops,  day  and    night,  on 
every   possible    opportunity.       When     the   history 
of  guerilla  warfare  is  written,  the  Afridis  will  merit 
a  prominent  place  in  it.     The  record  of  the  Tirah 
expedition  is  the  record  of  an    army  which   most 
manfully  performed  the  arduous  task   apportioned 
to  it ;  and  conspicuous  among  all  his  comrades  in 
that    expedition,    in    courage   and    moral    grandeur 
as  well  as  in  inches,  primus  inter  pares,  stands  forth 
Lieutenant-Colonel    John    Haughton    of  the    36th 
Sikhs,  a  soldier  sans  penr  ct  sans  reprochc.     Were 


TO  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

I  to  quote  here  all  that  earlier  writers  have  said  in 
his  honour  and  praise,  I  should  fill  many  pages. 
I  need  not  do  so.  Those  whose  love  and  regard 
for  him  are  deep  and  lasting  will  have  read  and 
treasured  all  that  has  been  said  and  written.  To 
the  majority  of  Englishmen,  to  whom  the  fame  of 
their  fellow-countrymen  is  dear,  it  will  suffice  to 
know  the  name  of  John  Haughton  as  that  of  the 
man  who  won  the  right  of  being  handed  down  to 
posterity  as  the  hero  of  Tirah  ;  and  that  without 
prejudice  to  hundreds  of  others  whose  deeds  of 
bravery,  whether  recorded  in  public,  treasured  in 
private,  or  buried  in  seeming  oblivion,  are  bearing 
their  good  fruit.  No  gallant  deed  is  lost.  If  no 
other  human  eye  sees  it,  the  doer  himself  is  the 
better  man  for  it. 

I  think  that  I  am  entitled — I  may  say  bound — 
to  repeat  here  the  brief  encomia  which  the  two 
chiefs  under  whom  Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton  served 
during  the  Tirah  expedition,  the  two  last  Com- 
manders-in-Chief in  India,  have  left  on  record 
regarding  him  in  their  respective  despatches. 
General  Sir  W.  S.  A.  Lockhart  wrote,  in  reporting 
"  The  Shinkamar  Affair :  "  "  Among  the  killed,  the 
country  has  to  deplore  the  loss  of  Lieut.-Colonel 
Haughton,  36th  Sikhs,  an  officer  whose  able  and 
gallant  leading  of  the  fine  regiment  which  he  com- 
manded had  repeatedly  come  under  my  notice." 
General  Sir  George  White  in  his  despatch  "  de- 
plored the  loss  to  the  army  of  so  distinguished  a 
soldier  as    Lieut.-Colonel    Haughton,    36th    Sikhs, 


THE   '' NEY"    OF  TIRAH.  II 

whose  career  was  so  full  of  promise."  It  was  further 
placed  on  record  in  the  London  Gazette*  that,  had 
Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton  lived,  he  would  have  been 
recommended  for  some  mark  of  Her  Majesty's 
favour.  As  is  well  known,  Her  Majesty  has  had 
her  own  way  of  showing  not  only  her  favour,  but 
also  her  sympathy. 

In  a  little  volume  published  In  India  by  Major 
E.  H.  Rodwell,  and  not  likely  to  have  many,  if 
any,  readers  in  Great  Britain,  appears  a  brief  but 
pregnant  tribute  to  "  the  gallant  Colonel  Haughton, 
the  Marshal  Ney  of  the  Tirah  campaign."  The 
simile  is  happy,  and  true  of  all  but  the  last  scene  of 
life.  A  sage  of  old  remarked  that  no  man  could  be 
called  fortunate  until  he  was  dead.  Ney  lived,  even 
through  the  dangers  of  Waterloo,  when  he  had  five 
horses  shot  under  him  and  his  clothes  riddled  with 
bullets.  It  were  better  had  fate  willed  that  he 
should  fall  at  the  head  of  the  Old  Guard  on  that 
1 8th  of  June.  Haughton  had  the  good  fortune  to 
die  very  nobly  in  action.  His  end  was  indeed 
evdavaaia,  for  death  was  instantaneous,  and  he  died 
honoured  and  mourned  by  all.  Contrast  with  this 
the  obscure  and  ignoble  death  of  General  Skobeleff, 
brilliant  and  brave,  but  devoid  of  principle. 

*  Publishing  the  Tirah  Despatch  and  Honours,  under  the  date 
May  20,  1898. 


12  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER    I. 

THE    HAUGHTON    AND    PRESGRAVE    FAMILIES. 

"A  people  which  takes  no  pride  in  the  noble  achievements  of 
remote  ancestors,  will  never  achieve  anything  worthy  to  be  remem- 
bered with  pride  by  remote  descendants." — Macaulay. 

When  a  man  wins  for  himself  distinction  in  this 
world,  there  underlies  the  record  of  his  lineage  a 
higher  interest  and  deeper  import  than  those  which 
the  mere  bare  skeleton  of  a  family  tree  can  satisfy. 
A  mere  framework  of  names  tells  little  or  nothing. 
We  desire  to  know  what  manner  of  men  and  women 
those  ancestors  were  who  wove  the  mental  and 
moral  fibre  which,  in  the  hour  of  stress,  withstood 
the  strain,  and  nerved  the  man  for  action. 

I  have  before  me  many  letters  from  John 
Haughton's  best  friends,  and  also  the  evidence  of 
his  own  words  and  deeds  ;  and  from  these  I  gather 
that  the  moral  qualities  which  distinguished  him 
were — high  sense  of  duty,  conscientious  industry 
and  application,  strong  religious  feeling,  staunch- 
ness, cool  courage,  resource  in  danger,  modesty, 
courtesy,  gentleness,  geniality,  and  readiness  to 
sacrifice  himself,  be  it  in  some  trifling   incident  of 


HIS   CHARACTER.  1 3 

daily  life,  or  in  the  moment  when  self-sacrifice 
meant  death.  It  is  almost  needless  to  say,  however, 
that  a  man  so  staunch  and  steady  as  he  in  the  hour 
of  danger,  was  one  whose  character  also  had  its 
stern  side.  Haughton's  most  intimate  friend  during 
his  career  as  a  soldier  was  his  old  brother  officer 
in  the  loth  Bengal  Infantry,  Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer. 
Let  me  quote  his  own  words,  written  to  me  a  few 
months  ago — 

"  He  (Haughton)  was  kindly  and  courteous  to  every  one, 
but  he  would  stand  no  nonsense,  and  could  answer  very 
curtly  and  brusquely  to  any  one  who  attempted  to  take  any 
liberty  with  him.  He  had  naturally  a  short  and  quick 
temper,  but  was  so  kind  and  tender-hearted  that  he  would 
forgive  and  look  over  any  fault  or  offence  against  himself, 
but  he  would  do  his  duty  in  a  matter  of  duty,  however 
painful  to  himself." 

In  these  words  we  have  an  outline  of  the  soft 
and  stern  sides  of  his  disposition,  and  a  sketch  also 
of  his  moral  character.  Intellectually  he  was  a  man 
of  more  than  average  capacity.  He  was  not  a 
genius  in  the  ordinary  acceptation  of  the  term,  but 
he  had  the  inspiration  of  genius  in  the  hour  of 
danger.  Physically  he  was,  with  his  six  feet  six 
inches  of  stature,  a  man  of  mark  anywhere.  There 
is  a  little  anecdote  in  one  of  Colonel  Palmer's  letters 
which  gives  a  vivid  picture  of  Haughton's  height. 
"He  joined  the  loth  Bengal  Infantry  at  Jalpaiguri 
in  1887.  I  well  remember  his  joining.  He  turned 
up  unexpectedly  one  morning  when  we  were  waiting 
for  the  '  Fall  in  '  to  sound.    He  was  in  white  uniform, 


14  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

and  we  noticed  his  very  tall  figure  a  long  way  off. 
Some  one  jocularly  remarked,  'Why,  here's  Kinchin- 
junga  got  loose.' "  (Kinchinjunga's  snow  -  clad 
summit,  28,000  feet  high,  could  be  occasionally  seen 
from  Jalpaiguri.)  John  Haughton  was  the  tallest 
of  a  tall  family.  His  younger  brother  Henry  stood 
six  feet  three  inches.  His  grandfather  and  father 
were  each  over  six  feet  in  height.  From  them,  and 
especially  from  the  latter,  he  inherited  not  only  his 
commanding  stature,  but  also  those  mental  and  moral 
qualities  which  made  him  the  man  and  soldier  he 
was.  The  same  sterling  attributes  evinced  them- 
selves in  his  elder  brother  Richard,  who  fought  out 
his  gallant  fight  amid  the  climatic  dangers  and 
difficulties  of  the  Western  Dooars ;  and  in  the 
younger  one,  Henry,  who  at  the  early  age  of 
twenty-five  succumbed  to  cholera.  That  disease 
would  seem  to  have  had  a  certain  fatality  for  the 
family — in  that  the  grand  -  uncle,  Sir  Graves 
Chamney  Haughton,  died  of  it  in  1849,  while 
Richard  Haughton's  recovery  from  it  in  1889  was 
due  mainly  to  his  having  lived  for  years  in  its 
midst,  so  that  when  it  did  grip  him  he  knew 
well  how  to  wrestle  with  it.  His  mother's  brother, 
Captain  D.  K.  Presgrave,  commanding  the  8th 
Bengal  Infantry,  died  of  it  at  Peshawar  in  October, 
1862. 

Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton  was  descended,  both  on 
his  father's  and  mother's  sides,  of  an  ancient  and 
good  lineage.  The  Irish  branch  of  the  Haughton 
family  traces  its  descent  to  the   De   Hoghtons  of 


HIS   LINEAGE.  I  5 

Hoghton  Tower,  who  are  reputed  to  have  been 
settled  in  Lancashire  since  the  Conquest.  In  old 
documents  the  name  of  the  family  is  spelt  in- 
differently Haughton,  Houghton,  Howghton, 
Hauton,  Horton,  and  even  Aulton,  also  De  Haugh- 
ton. A  branch  of  the  family  was  settled  at  Stam- 
ford in  Rutlandshire  in  the  sixteenth  century.* 

In  the  reign  of  Charles  I.  the  representative  of 
this  branch  was  taken  to  Ireland  and  settled  there. 
A  letter  written  to  General  J.  C.  Haughton  by  his 
father  contains  the  following  statement : — 

"According  to  family  tradition,  the  first  of  the  name 
(i.e.  of  the  Irish  branch)  was  in  childhood  brought  to 
Ireland  by  Captain  Hoyle  and  his  wife,  who  were  relatives 
of  the  Haughtons  of  Haughton  Tower  in  Lancashire,  with 
the  intention  of  bringing  him  back  when  the  'troubles,'  as 
the  wars  of  the  Commonwealth  were  called,  were  over.  I 
know  not  where  Captain  Hoyle  settled,  nor  anything  more 
connected  with  the  intermediate  members  of  the  line  till  the 
time  of  my  grandfather,!  who   held  the  lands  of  Cool-a- 

*  In  the  Rev.  C.  Nevinson's  "  History  of  Stamford."  p.  87,  is  the 
following  passage:  "A  town-hall  was  erected  in  1558  by  the  then 
Alderman  John  Haughton.  It  stood  across  the  north  end  of  the 
bridge,  over  an  arch  which  spanned  the  passage,  but  being  found  to 
be  an  obstacle  to  the  increasing  traffic,  it  was  removed  in  1776  for 
the  improvement  of  the  thoroughfare,  and  the  present  town-hall  near 
St.  Mary's  Church  was  erected  in  its  stead."  The  same  Alderman 
John  Haughton  is  referred  to  in  an  extant  autograph  letter  by  Lord 
Burghley,  Lord  Treasurer  under  Queen  Elizabeth,  in  the  following 
words  :  "  We  understand  that  one  —  houghton  who  is  now  ye  alder- 
man of  this  town,  doth  continue  in  the  town,  and  is  serious  to  do  his 
endeavour,"  etc.,  etc.  William  Cecil,  Lord  Burghley,  inherited  from 
his  father  and  mother  large  estates  near  Stamford,  and  as  a  boy  was 
educated  at  a  school  in  that  town.  Throughout  his  life  he  was  a 
benefactor  to  it.  From  Alderman  John  Haughton  of  Stamford 
descended  Colonel  John  Haughton  of  Tirah. 

t  Richard  Haughton. 


1 6  JOHN  H AUG  11  TON. 

kirkc  in  the  parish  of  Newcastle,  co.  Wicklow,  on  the 
estate  of  Earl  Fitzwilliam.  He  had  a  large  family  of  sons 
and  daughters.     Of  the  former  my  father  was  the  second." 

This  second  son  was  the  great-grandfather  of 
Lieut.-Colonel  John  Haughton,  and  a  physician  in 
Dublin  in  the  latter  half  of  the  last  century.  He 
married  Jane,  the  daughter  of  Edward  Archer,  Esq., 
of  Mount  John,  co.  Wicklow,  and  by  her  left 
several  sons.  The  eldest,  Richard,  the  grandfather 
of  the  subject  of  this  memoir,  became  Professor 
of  Oriental  Languages  at  Addiscombe.*  One  of 
his  pupils  there  (General  B.  H.  Morton,  late  B.S.C., 
still  living,  one  who  knew  three  generations  of 
Haughtons — the  professor  at  Addiscombe,  the  de- 
fender of  Charikar,  and  the  brave  pioneer  of  the  tea 
industry  in  the  Western  Dooars)  writes  of  him  as 
a  man  of  fine  presence  and  a  good  scholar,  who 
knew  how  to  keep  his  pupils  at  Addiscombe,  unruly 
as  they  were  prone  to  be,  in  thoroughly  good  order. 
He  was  a  man  of  strong  character.  To  his  son's 
published  narrative  of  the  siege  of  Charikar  is 
appended  a  most  interesting  letter  written  to  him 

*  He  married  Miss  Baker,  of  Bally  David,  in  co.  Tipperary, 
who  by  her  mother  was  related  to  Sir  John  Colpoys,  Admiral  of  the 
Fleet  at  the  mutiny  of  the  Nore.  The  sister  of  this  Sir  John  Colpoys 
married  Mr.  Griffith,  whose  son,  Admiral  Sir  Edward  Griffith,  took 
the  name  of  Colpoys-Griffith  on  succeeding  to  his  uncle's  property. 
It  was  this  Sir  Edward  Colpoys-Griffith  who  gave  young  John  Col- 
poys Haughton,  the  hero  of  Charikar,  his  introduction  to  the  navy. 
Sir  John  Colpoys  was  also  treasurer  and  afterwards  governor  of 
Greenwich  Hospital.  When  his  name  was  notified  to  King  George 
III.  for  the  governorship,  His  Majesty  is  said  to  have  made  the 
following  note  on  the  paper  :  "  This  is  an  appointment  of  merit.  A 
better  man  and  a  better  admiral  does  not  exist." 


ORIENTALIST  ANCESTORS.  1 7 

(the  professor)  in  May,  1842,  by  Major  Eldred 
Pottinger  from  his  place  of  imprisonment  among 
the  Afghans  near  Kabul.  We  can  imagine  what  a 
year  of  anxiety  1842  was  to  Professor  Haughton,  as 
to  thousands  of  others  in  England,  His  son,  after 
his  gallant  defence  of  and  marvellous  escape  from 
Charikar,  was  finally  left  a  prisoner,  severely 
wounded,  among  the  Afghans,  and  remained  in 
their  hands  till  September,  1842,  when  Sir 
George  Pollock  and  Sir  William  Nott  reoccupied 
Kabul. 

The  professor  at  Addiscombe  had  a  still  more 
distinguished  brother,  Sir  Graves  Chamney  Haugh- 
ton, who  was  for  many  years  Professor  of  Oriental 
Languages  at  Haileybury.  He  was  born  at  Dublin 
in  1 788,  and,  after  being  educated  in  England,  obtained 
in  1808  a  military  cadetship  on  the  Bengal  Establish- 
ment of  the  H.E.I.C.S.  In  the  seven  years  (1808- 
1815)  which  followed  his  arrival  in  India,  he  devoted 
himself  to  the  study  of  Oriental  languages,  and 
attained  the  standard  of  the  degree  of  honour  or 
high  proficiency  in  Arabic,  Persian,  Sanscrit,  Hin- 
dustani, and  Bengali.  In  181 5  he  returned  to 
England,  and  from  1817  to  1828  held,  first  the 
Assistant-Professorship  and  afterwards  the  Pro- 
fessorship of  Oriental  Languages  in  the  East  India 
College  at  Haileybury.  During  this  period  he 
published  many  excellent  Oriental  class-books.  In 
18 19  he  was  elected  an  honorary  M.A.  of  Oxford, 
and  in  1821  a  Fellow  of  the  Royal  Society.  He 
was  an  original  member  and  an  energetic  promoter 

c 


1 8  JOHN  IIAUGHTON. 

of  the  Royal  Asiatic  Society.  During  the  latter 
years  of  his  Hfe  he  devoted  himself  to  the  study  of 
metaphysics  and  philology,  in  which  latter  field 
he  must  have  been  one  of  the  earliest  English 
workers.  In  1833  he  was  created  a  Knight  of  the 
Guelphic  Order.  He  spent  much  of  his  later  life 
in  Paris,  where  he  fell  a  victim  to  cholera  at 
St.  Cloud  on  August  28,  1849.  He  was  a  man 
whose  studies,  as  his  published  works  show, 
covered  a  very  wide  area  of  learning  and  thought, 
embracing  philosophy,  philology,  science,  medicine, 
and  metaphysics. 

On  the  mother's  side  Lieut-Colonel  Haughton 
was  descended  from  the  family  of  Presgrave,  which 
can  trace  its  descent  back  through  the  Presgraves 
of  Bourne,  Clerks  of  Penicuik,  Rattrays  of  Craig- 
hall,  and  Stewarts,  Lords  of  Kinfauns,  to  Joan 
Beaufort  (granddaughter  of  John  of  Gaunt),  who 
married  (i)  James  L  of  Scotland  and  (2)  the  Earl 
of  Athole.  His  mother,  Jessie  Eleanor,  was  the 
eldest  daughter  of  Colonel  Duncan  Presgrave  and 
sister  of  Captain  Duncan  Kyd  Presgrave,  both 
officers  of  the  Bengal  Staff  Corps,  and  both  men 
who  in  their  own  particular  line  made  their  mark. 
Colonel  Duncan  Presgrave  was  one  of  those  men 
such  as  might  be  found  in  the  first  half  of  the  nine- 
teenth century,  who  came  to  India  and  never 
thought  of  revisiting  their  native  land.  He  spent 
forty  years  in  India  without  taking  leave,  and  when, 
in  1 841,  a  paralytic  stroke  obliged  him  to  seek  a 
change  of  climate,  it  was  only  to  reach  the  Cape  of 


THE    FIRST   SUSPENSION    BRIDGE    IN    INDIA,    BUILT   OVER    THE   EEAS    RIVER 
BY   COLONEL   DUNCAN    PRESGRAVE. 

[FroDi  an  old  photograph  by  Lieiif. -Colonel  John  Ilaughion.) 


A    RECORD   SUSPENSION  BRIDGE.  1 9 

Good  Hope,  and  die  there.  He  was  a  man  of 
versatile  abilities.  Engineering  talent  ran  strong 
in  the  Presgraves.  After  being  for  years  mint- 
master  at  Saugor,  he  was  selected  by  Govern- 
ment to  fill  the  post  of  superintendent  of  the 
Cossipore  Foundry,  an  appointment  then  usually 
given  to  an  artillery  officer. 

The  enofineerins!"  feat  for  which  Colonel  Pres- 
grave  is  noted,  is  the  construction,  in  1828-30,  of 
a  suspension  bridge  over  the  Beas,  twelve  miles 
from  Saugor.  This  bridge  is  said  to  be  the  only 
suspension  bridge  in  India  made  of  Indian  iron  and 
constructed  by  Indian  workmen.  These  workmen 
were  taught  by  Colonel  Presgrave  himself.  In 
March,  1893,  Lieut-Colonel  John  Haughton  visited 
this  bridge,  and  has  left  on  record  this  description 
of  it  :— 

"  I  was  rather  unexpectedly  ordered  to  the  artillery 
camp  of  exercise  near  Saugor,  I  took  the  opportunity  to 
visit  and  photograph  the  iron  suspension  bridge  over  the 
Beas  river,  twelve  miles  from  Saugor.  Unfortunately,  I 
had  not  a  pencil  with  me  to  take  down  the  inscriptions, 
of  which  one  is  to  the  following  effect :  '  Beas  Suspension 
Bridge,  designed  and  constructed  by  Major  Presgrave, 
Assay-Master,  Saugor  Mint ;  commenced  1828,  completed 
1830.'  The  other  is  to  the  effect  that  the  work  was 
entirely  carried  out  by  local  native  workmen  from  iron  ore 
found  and  smelted  in  the  district.  When  one  considers 
that  our  grandfather  was  not  an  engineer  by  profession, 
and  had  never  seen  a  suspension  bridge,  and  when  one 
further  considers  how  stupid  native  workmen  are  about 
any  work  they  are  unaccustomed  to,  one   is   struck  with 


20  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

astonishment  and  admiration  at  this  work.  The  bridge 
was  never  intended  for  heavy  weights,  and  looks  very 
fragile,  but  now,  after  so  many  years  (without,  I  believe, 
any  material  repairs),  was  able  to  stand  the  strain  of  a 
whole  battery  of  artillery  crossing  it.  They,  of  course, 
crossed  one  gun  at  a  time,  but  each  gun  with  horses  and 
men  weighs,  I  believe,  about  six  tons." 

Captain  Duncan  Kyd  Presgrave  (born  in  1829) 
inherited  his  father's  engineering  talent,  and  when 
a  boy  of  sixteen  was  bound  to  the  well-known  civil 
engineer,  Sir  Robert  Stephenson,  for  five  years. 
However,  a  few  months  later,  he  was  offered  a 
direct  commission  in  India  by  one  of  the  Court  of 
Directors  of  the  H.E.I.C.S.,  and  his  guardians  con- 
sidered it  best  for  him  to  accept  it.  He  accordingly 
started  for  India,  and  in  1845  arrived  in  Calcutta. 
After  declining,  by  Sir  William  Sleeman's  advice, 
an  appointment  in  the  bodyguard  of  Sir  Herbert 
Maddock,  at  that  time  Lieutenant-Governor  of 
Bengal,  he  joined  his  regiment,  the  59th  N. I.,  which 
was  then  proceeding  on  active  service,  and  with  it 
served  through  the  first  Panjab  campaign  (1845-46). 
He  subsequently,  like  many  other  officers  of  the 
Bengal  army,  passed  into  civil  employ  in  the 
Panjab,  and  continued  in  it  till  the  outbreak  of  the 
Mutiny  in  1857.  Like  his  father,  he  had  a  natural 
talent  for  engineering.  Of  that  I  can  quote  no 
better  proof  than  a  letter  written  to  him  when 
assistant-commissioner  at  Jullundur  in  March,  1855, 
by  Mr.  (afterwards  Sir  Donald  and  Lieutenant- 
Governor  of  the  Panjab)  McLeod  : — 


a  pioneer  of  girder  bridges.  21 

"  My  dear  Presgrave, 

"  Allow  me  to  convey  to  you  my  heartfelt  con- 
gratulations on  the  very  gratifying  intelligence  conveyed 
by  your  letter  of  the  26th,  of  the  complete  success  of  your 
girders  to  be,  and  of  your  having  thus  become  the  pioneer 
in  the  matter  of  girder  bridges  for  the  Panjab  at  all  events, 
and  I  believe  that  in  the  whole  of  Hindoosthan  no  similar 
undertaking  has  hitherto  been  accomplished.  I  hope  that 
this  will  be  the  beginning  of  a  new  era  for  the  crossing  of 
our  wider  spans,  and  I  shall  anxiously  await  the  results  of  the 
official  announcement.  I  have  to  thank  you  also  for  a  copy 
of  the  pamphlet  regarding  your  father's  beautiful  bridge 
over  the  Beas,  of  the  construction  of  which  I  was  myself 
in  some  sort  a  witness,  as  it  was  opened  but  partly  when 
I  joined  at  Saugor,  and  there  remained  much  more  still  to 
be  done  to  it,  in  which  I  used  to  take  a  great  interest.  In 
building  the  first  iron  girders  in  India  you  have  followed 
worthily  in  the  steps  of- the  distinguished  man  who  con- 
structed the  first  and  only  suspension  bridge  made  of 
Indian  iron. 

"  (Signed)      D.  McLeod." 

In  1857,  when  the  Mutiny  broke  out,  Captain 
Presgrave  happened  to  be  on  sick  leave  at  Simla. 
He  at  once  gave  up  his  leave,  and  instead  of  re- 
joining his  civil  appointment  in  the  Panjab,  came 
down  to  Delhi  and  volunteered  for  service  with  the 
75th  Regiment,  now  the  ist  Battalion  of  the  Gordon 
Highlanders.  This  regiment  played  a  very  promi- 
nent and  distinguished  part  in  the  suppression  of 
the  Mutiny,  and  with  it  Captain  Presgrave  served 
throughout,  as  may  be  seen  from  the  following 
extract  from  a  letter  written  by  Major  F.  S.  (now 
Lord)  Roberts  to   Captain   Presgrave's    widow   (to 


5^  yOHN  HAUGHTON. 

whom  and  to  whose  children  he  has  always  been 
a  kind  and  steadfast  friend),  dated  Meerut,  March 
15.  1S63:- 

"Shortly  after  the  Mutiny  broke  out  in  1857,  the  late 
Captain  Presgrave  was,  I  believe,  on  sick  leave  at  Simla. 
He  gave  up  his  leave  and  came  down  to  Delhi,  where 
he  volunteered  for  H.M.'s  75th  Regiment,  with  which 
he  served  throughout  the  campaign.  The  part  taken  by 
this  distinguished  regiment  is  too  well  known  to  need  a 
fresh  account  from  me.  Suffice  it  to  say,  that  Captain 
Presgrave  was  associated  with  it  on  all  occasions  :  at  the 
siege  and  assault  of  Delhi ;  actions  of  Boolundshahr,  Ally- 
ghur,  and  Agra  ;  advance  on  Lucknow,  and  occupation  of 
Alumbagh,  in  which  place  H.M.'s  75th  Regiment  remained 
throughout  the  cold  weather  of  1857-58.  Captain  Presgrave 
was  holding  an  appointment  under  the  civil  Government 
of  the  Panjab  before  the  outbreak  ;  this  he  preferred  giving 
up  to  leaving  the  army  while  employed  in  the  field.  It 
was,  of  course,  a  great  loss  to  him  ;  for  on  the  restoration 
of  peace  he  was  without  an  appointment,  and  remained 
so  until  his  Excellency,  General  Sir  Hugh  Rose,  became 
Commander-in-Chief  On  hearing  of  the  peculiar  circum- 
stances of  the  case,  and  being  anxious  to  reward  so  gallant 
an  officer,  his  Excellency  gave  the  command  of  the  8th 
Native  Infantry  to  Captain  Presgrave,  which  command 
that  officer  held  until  his  death  by  cholera,  at  Peshawur, 
in  October,  1862." 

To  this  testimony  let  me  add  those  of  Sir  Hugh 
Rose  and  Sir  Sydney  Cotton,  two  officers  who,  the 
one  actively  in  Central  India,  the  other  in  the  less 
conspicuous  but  scarce  less  onerous  post  of  the 
Peshawar  command,  played  a  foremost  part  in  sup- 
pressing  the    Mutiny.      It    is   to    Sydney    Cotton, 


LORD   ROBERTS   AND   SIR   HUGH  ROSE.  23 

coupled  with  Herbert  Edwardes  and  John  Nichol- 
son, that  we  largely  owe  the  maintenance  of  order 
in  the  Panjab  in  1857.  Without  such  men,  and 
others  like  them  to  support  him,  John  Lawrence 
could  never  have  done  what  he  did.  The  light  of 
Sydney  Cotton  is  one  that  has  lain  under  a  bushel, 
but  it  was  a  noble  and  strong  light  for  all  that. 
The  retention  of  Peshawar  and  the  disarmament 
of  the  native  troops  there  were  the  work  of  Herbert 
Edwardes  and  Sydney  Cotton.  Their  firmness 
kept  the  Afghans  quiet.  Had  this  not  been  so, 
John  Nicholson  could  not  have  led  to  Delhi  that 
Brigade  which  first  turned  the  scale  there  in  favour 
of  the  British  arms. 

"  Headquarters,  Simla,  October  8,  1863. 
"  The  Commander-in-Chief  in  India  has  much  pleasure 
in  bearing  testimony  to  the  services  of  the  late  Captain 
Presgrave  while  in  command  of  the  8th  Native  Infantry. 
Captain  Presgrave  served  in  the  Sutlej  campaign  in  1845  and 
1846,  and  throughout  the  Mutiny.  He,  with  a  most  laudable 
military  spirit,  volunteered  his  services  with  the  army  before 
Delhi,  throwing  up  an  appointment  which  he  held  in  the 
Panjab.  Throughout  the  Mutiny  he  served  with  H.M.'s 
75th  Regiment.  In  recognition  of  his  good  services.  Sir 
Hugh  Rose  gave  him  the  command  of  the  8th  Native 
Infantry,  which  he  held  until  his  death  on  October  21, 
1862  ;  and  his  Excellency  was  much  satisfied  with  the 
manner  in  which  Captain  Presgrave  exercised  the  com- 
mand which  he  confided  to  him. 

"(Signed)         H.  ROSE, 
"  General  Commander-in-Chief,  India." 

Sir  Sydney  Cotton's   testimonial  is  couched  in 


24  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

terms  of  greater  warmth.  Captain  Presgrave  served 
for  some  time  under  his  personal  command  at 
Peshawar. 

"Timperley  Hall,  Cheshire,  March  28,  1866. 
"  Major  Presgrave  was  a  most  valuable  and  most  efficient 
officer.  He  served  under  my  command  on  the  Peshawur 
frontier,  and,  as  commander  of  a  regiment,  rendered  very 
important  services  to  the  State,  by  bringing  into  a  high 
state  of  discipline  and  efficiency  a  new  corps,  raised  at  the 
expiration  of  the  Mutiny  of  the  old  Sepoy  Army  of  Bengal 
in  1857,  ^'"d  at  a  time  when  the  native  troops,  who  had 
rebelled  against  the  Government,  had  to  be  replaced  by 
corps  composed  of  men  on  whom  reliance  could  be  placed. 
It  was  only  by  men  such  as  Major  Presgrave  that  this 
new  order  of  things  (of  such  vital  importance  to  the  State) 
could  be  accomplished,  and  well  indeed  did  Major  Presgrave 
discharge  his  duties  up  to  the  moment  of  his  death,  which 
was  very  sudden  and  unexpected.  He  died  of  spasmodic 
cholera.  I  do  not  herein  advert  to  Major  Presgrave's 
services  at  the  siege  of  Delhi  and  elsewhere  during  the 
Mutiny,  as  he  was  not  then  under  my  immediate  command, 
but  I  do  know  that  Major  Presgrave  was  in  every  respect 
a  very  serious  loss  to  the  service,  and  no  one  felt  that  or 
understood  it  better  than  myself.  I  know  also  that  Major 
Presgrave  relinquished  the  civil  service  and  all  its  pecuniary 
advantages  at  a  moment  when  his  services  as  a  soldier  were 

required. 

"(Signed)         SYDNEY  CoTTON, 
"Major-General,  Commanding  Northern  District, 
"  Late  Commander  of  the  Peshawur  Division,  Bengal." 

The  59th  Bengal  Native  Infantry,  the  corps  to 
which  Captain  D.  K.  Presgrave  was  originally 
appointed,  and  with  which  he  served  through  the 


MATERNAL    INFLUENCE.  25 

Sutlej  campaign,  became  after  the  Mutiny  the 
8th  Native  Infantry.  Captain  Presgrave's  ap- 
pointment to  its  command  was  in  all  respects 
appropriate,  and,  as  we  have  evidence  above,  well 
deserved. 

I  have  been  able  to  give,  from  papers  placed  at 
my  disposal  by  members  of  the  Haughton  and 
Presgrave  families,  this  sketch,  imperfect  as  it  is,  of 
the  men  who  were  the  nearest  relatives  and  imme- 
diate "  forbears  "  of  Lieut. -Colonel  John  Haughton. 
To  his  father,  in  whom  I  see  more  than  in  any  other 
man  the  likeness,  moral  and  physical,  of  the  son,  a 
separate  chapter  must  deservedly  be  given.  It  is 
almost  a  recognized  law  of  nature  that  the  character- 
istics of  the  mother  are  reproduced  in  the  son.  We 
have  not  in  this  case  the  data  on  which  to  found 
any  conclusions.  Colonel  Haughton's  mother  died 
on  May  9,  1873,  on  her  way  home  from  India, 
at  Castellamare,  near  Naples.  She  was  neces- 
sarily, being  with  her  husband  in  India,  much 
separated  from  her  children,  who  were  brought  up 
at  home  ;  but  knowing  as  we  do  what  manner  of 
men  her  father,  brother,  and  husband  were,  and 
what  her  three  sons  became,  we  may  reasonably 
assume  that  she  was  a  woman  of  some  mark  and 
character.  When  Lieutenant  J.  C.  Haughton  went 
home  on  leave  after  the  first  Afghan  War,  he  met 
Miss  Jessie  Eleanor  Presgrave  at  Brussels  ;  and 
when,  in  1845,  she  came  out  to  Calcutta  with  her 
brother  (Captain  D.  K.  Presgrave),  he  proposed  for 
and  was  accepted  by  her.     The  marriage  took  place 


26  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

at  Calcutta  on  June  i6,  1845.  She  became  the 
mother  of  four  children :  Richard,  born  May  7, 
1848,  at  Chyebassa,  near  Chhota  Nagpur  ;  Susan,* 
born  June  10,  1850,  at  the  Cape  of  Good  Hope; 
John,  born  August  22,  1852,  at  Chhota  Nagpur; 
Henry  Lawrence,  born  October  i,  1857,  at  Tavoy. 
The  name  given  to  the  last  is,  obviously,  in  memory 
of  the  noble  soldier  who  fell  in  the  defence  of 
Lucknow  a  few  months  before ;  a  man  whom 
Lieutenant  J.  C.  Haughton  must  have  met  and 
known  during  the  first  Afghan  War,  and  whom  he, 
like  every  other  Indian  soldier,  had  in  his  time  revered 
as  one  of  the  finest  characters  the  army  has  pro- 
duced. His  namesake,  short  as  his  life  was,  showed 
himself  worthy  of  the  name  given  him.  John  was 
in  many  respects  his  father's  replica ;  and  Richard, 
the  eldest,  was,  as  we  will  show  later  on,  cast  in  a 
very  similar  mould. 

*  Married  the  Rev.  Charles  Halford  Hawkins,  M.A.,  for  more 
than  thirty  years  a  master  at  Winchester  School,  and  as  such  most 
highly  esteemed. 


(     27     ) 


CHAPTER    II. 

GENERAL   JOHN    COLPOYS    HAUGHTON.* 

"  His  signal  deeds  and  prowess  high 
Demand  no  pompous  eulogy — 
Ye  saw  his  deeds." 

Longfellow. 

The  father  of  John  Haughton  was  born  at  DubHn 
on  November  25,  1817.  He  was  an  only  son, 
though  he  had  four  sisters.  Such  brief  scholastic 
education  as  he  received  was  obtained  at  Shrewsbury- 
School,  under  the  then  celebrated  Dr.  Samuel  Butler 
(afterwards  Bishop  of  Lichfield).  He,  however,  left 
Shrewsbury,  at  the  age  of  eleven,  to  be  entered 
as  a  first-class  volunteer  on  the  books  of  H.M.S. 
Magnificent,  the  receiving  ship  at  Jamaica.  Admiral 
Sir  Edward  Colpoys-Griffith,  at  that  time  com- 
manding the  West   Indian,   North  American,   and 

*  Authorities  consulted  : — "  War  Services  of  all  the  Officers  of 
Her  Majesty's  Bengal  Army,"  compiled  by  Captain  J.  C.  Anderson, 
1863  ;  Dictionary  of  National  Biography,  sub  voce j  Notices  in  the 
Overland  and  Homeward  Mails  and  Indian  Statesman  of  1887  ; 
Kaye's  "War  in  Afghanistan  ; "  Lady  Sale's  Journal;  "The  Kabul 
Insurrection  of  1841-42,"  by  Sir  Vincent  Eyre;  Stocqueler's  "Me- 
morials of  Afghanistan  ;"  "  Memoir  of  Major  Eldred  Pottinger,"  by 
Kaye,  in  Good  Words  for  1S66;  John  Colpoys  Haughton's  "  Chari- 
kar,"  ist  edit.  1867,  2nd  edit.  1S79  ;  "  ^"  Episode  of  the  Afghan 
War,"  by  Lieut.  C.  R.  Low,  in  Every  Bofs  Magazine,  September, 
1877;  "Memoir  of  Captain  Augustus  Abbott,"  published  by  Lieut. 
C.  R.  Low;  Sir  Henry  Durand's  "Afghan  War;"  Blue  Book  on 
Afghanistan,  1843,  ^^^  private  documents. 


28  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Newfoundland  Station,  was  a  relative  of  the  Haugh- 
ton  family,  and  under  his  auspices  young  Haughton 
made  his  entry  into  the  navy  in  1829.  He  served 
as  a  midshipman  in  the  navy  (in  H.M.'s  Ships 
Fly  and  Bclviderd)  from  1829  to  1836,  and  in 
1831-32  took  part  in  the  suppression  of  the  negro 
rebellion  in  Jamaica.  He  was  invalided  from  the 
navy  in  1836.  Through  the  influence  of  his  father 
and  uncle  with  the  Court  of  Directors  of  the 
H.E.I.C,  he  obtained,  in  February,  1837,  a  Bengal 
cadetship,  and  on  December  9  of  the  same  year, 
being  then  just  twenty  years  of  age,  joined  as  an 
ensign  the  31st  Bengal  Native  Infantry.* 

The  policy  which  led  to  the  first  Afghan  War 
was  then  being  matured.  In  the  summer  of  1838 
orders  were  issued  for  the  concentration  of  the 
Army  of  the  Indus  at  Firozpur.  The  31st  Bengal 
Native  Infantry  formed  part  of  Major-General  Nott's 
Brigade  in  that  army.  Ensign  Haughton's  experi- 
ence of  active  service  thus  began  early  in  his  career. 
He  accompanied  his  regiment  in  its  march  from 
Firozpur  to  Sukkur,  and  shared  in  the  hardships 
and  trials  of  the  advance  across  the  Kachchi  desert 
and  up  the  Bolan  Pass  to  Quetta  in  the  winter 
of  1838-39.  Our  troops  were  harried  all  the  way 
by  Baluch  and  Brahui  marauders,  and  sorely  tried 
by  the  intense  cold  and  the  dearth  of  supplies. 
The  Bengal  Division,  under  Sir  Willoughby  Cotton, 
which  had  left  Firozpur  on  December  18,  1838, 
equipped  with   a  luxury  that  in   these  days  excites 

*  Now  the  2nd  (Queen's  Own)  Rajputs. 


STORMING   OF  KELAT.  29 

wonder,*  reached  Ouetta  on  March  26,  1839, 
almost  in  a  state  of  starvation.  Mr.  Stocqueler  tells 
how  at  Firozpur  an  officer  declined  his  offer  of  a  few 
boxes  of  cheroots,  with  the  remark,  "  Oh,  thanks  ! 
our  mess  has  two  camel-loads  of  the  best  Manillas  ;  " 
whereas,  on  arrival  at  Ouetta,  there  was  "  not  a  drop 
of  beer  with  the  army,"  and  both  men  and  animals 
were  on  half  or  even  quarter  rations. 

It  is  no  easy  matter,  with  the  most  careful  study 
of  the  numerous  writers  on  the  first  Afghan  War,  to 
trace  the  doings  of  any  particular  corps.  The  31st 
Bengal  Native  Infantry  evidently  left  Ouetta  with 
Sir  John  Keane's  column  in  April,  1839,  and  was 
probably  detached  to  garrison  some  point  on  the 
communications  between  Ouetta  and  Ghazni  ;  for  it 
was  not  present  at  the  siege  of  Ghazni.  When 
Major-General  Willshire  was  directed  to  attack 
Kelat  and  depose  its  chief,  Mehrab  Khan,  the  31st 
Bengal  Native  Infantry  formed  part  of  the  force 
under  his  command.  It  marched  with  him  from 
Ouetta  on  November  3,  1839,  and  on  the  13th 
of  the  same  month  co-operated  with  the  2nd  and 
1 7th  Foot  in  storming  Kelat.  The  storming  column 
of  the  three  regiments,  having  driven  the  Baluchis 
from  the  hills  covering  the  city,  followed  the  retreat- 
ing enemy  so  closely  and  rapidly  that  they  succeeded 
in  enterine  the  orate  of  the  fortified  town  before  it 
could  be  closed.  The  town  being  occupied,  our 
troops   then    assailed    the   citadel,    and     forced    an 

*   Vide  Stocqueler's  "Memorials  of  Afghanistan  "and  Sir  Charles 
Napier's  "  Life." 


30  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

entrance  to  it.  A  hand-to-hand  fight  then  ensued, 
in  which  Mehrab  Khan  and  many  Baluch  and  Brahui 
chiefs  were  slain.  A  little  later  the  31st  Bengal 
Native  Infantry  was  attacked  in  camp  by  Mehrab 
Khan's  defeated  troops,  who  continued  to  infest  the 
country  between  Ouetta  and  Dadur  until  the  close 
of  the  campaign.  The  attack  was  successfully 
repulsed.  It  would  appear  that  Ensign  Haughton 
was  with  the  31st  Bengal  Native  Infantry  during 
these  operations,  though  he  is  stated  to  have  been 
appointed  on  March  5,  1839,  to  be  the  adjutant 
of  a  provisional  battalion  of  Shah  Shuja's  *  con- 
tingent. It  was  in  this  capacity,  doubtless,  that  he 
took  part  in  the  action  of  "Tazee"  on  May  10, 
1840.  The  Ghilzais  having  again  raised  the 
standard  of  rebellion  (the  first  outbreak  had  been 
crushed  by  Captain  Outram  in  1839),  and  assembled 
in  force  at  Tazee,  Captain  Anderson,  of  the  Bengal 
Horse  Artillery,  with  four  guns,  800  infantry,  and 
360  Irregular  Horse,  attacked  and  defeated  them 
there,  inflicting  considerable  loss.  General  Nott 
then  arrived  from  Kandahar  with  reinforcements, 
and  put  an  end  to  the  insurrection.  Soon  after 
this.  Ensign  Haughton  must  have  proceeded  to 
Kabul  and  joined  Shah  Shuja's  4th  or  Gurkha 
Regiment  of  Infantry.     This  corps,  raised  by  Major 

*  "  Shuja'-ud-daulah  "  was  the  court  title  or  official  designation  of 
the  Afghan  prince  of  the  Saddozai  family,  whose  cause  the  Govern- 
ment of  India  found  it  convenient  to  espouse,  as  a  pretext  for 
attacking  the  Amir  Dost  Mohammed  Khan.  He  was  a  refugee  in 
1838  at  Ludhiana.  Some  of  his  descendants  are,  or  were  very 
recently,  serving  in  the  ranks  of  our  Native  Army  in  India. 


B  A  MIAN  AND   MAIWAND.  3  I 

McSherry,  of  the  30th  Bengal  Native  Infantry,  in 
the  summer  of  1838,  and  composed  originally  of 
Gurkhas  and  hill-men  from  Kumaon,  had  accom- 
panied Sir  John  Keane  to  Ghazni,  taking  part  in 
the  fighting  both  there  and  on  the  way  there.  On 
September  12,  1839,  this  regiment  formed  part  of  a 
small  force  despatched  from  Kabul  to  hold  Bamian. 
It  was  then  commanded  by  Captain  Hay,  with 
Lieutenant  William  Broadfoot  as  second  in  com- 
mand, and  Lieutenant  Golding  as  adjutant.  Detach- 
ments of  it  were  subsequently  pushed  forward  to 
Syghan  and  Bajgah,  amid  the  difficult  passes  of  the 
Hindu  Kush,  and  there  they  held  their  own,  fighting 
continually  with  Dost  Mohammed's  Uzbeg  troops 
and  the  local  clans  until  August,  1840.  On  the 
news  that  Dost  Mohammed  was  advancing  with 
a  large  force,  these  detachments  fell  back  on  the 
main  body  at  Bamian.  Meanwhile  Colonel  Dennie 
left  Kabul  with  reinforcements,  and,  arriving  at 
Bamian  early  in  September,  assumed  command.  On 
September  17,  hearing  that  the  enemy's  advanced 
troops  were  within  striking  distance.  Colonel 
Dennie  moved  out  with  nine  hundred  men,  and, 
to  his  surprise,  found  himself  face-to-face  with  Dost 
Mohammed's  entire  force.*     Without  hesitation  he 

*  Military  officers  in  Afghanistan  were  even  more  dependent  on 
the  political  authorities  for  information  in  the  first  than  in  the  second 
Afghan  War.  Colonel  Dennie's  situation  at  Bamian  in  September, 
1840,  is  analogous  to  that  of  General  Burrows  at  Maiwand  in  July, 
1880.  In  both  cases  political  information  seriously  under-estimated 
the  enemy's  forces.  Colonel  Dennie,  confronted  unexpectedly  with 
greatly  superior  numbers,  by  the  promptitude  of  his  attack  won 
victory.  General  Burrows  courted  and  suffered  defeat  by  remaining 
on  the  defensive  in  a  singularly  ill-chosen  position. 


32  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

led  his  troops  to  the  attack,  and  won  a  decisive 
victory,  to  which  the  Gurkhas  contributed  by  their 
courage  and  ^la7t.  Dost  Mohammed  fell  back  on 
Khulm,  and  Colonel  Dennie,  in  accordance  with  his 
orders,  withdrew  the  Bamian  force,  including  the 
Gurkhas,  to  Kabul.  Captain  Hay,  whose  health  had 
broken  down,  was  now  succeeded  in  the  command 
by  Captain  Codrington.  Such,  briefly,  was  the 
career  of  Shah  Shuja's  Gurkha  regiment,  up  to  the 
time  when  Ensign  (or  Lieutenant,  as  he  is  now 
termed  by  every  writer,  though  he  was  not 
gazetted  Lieutenant  till  July  i6,  1840)  Haughton 
joined  it.  After  passing  the  winter  of  1840-41  at 
Kabul,  the  regiment  was  ordered  to  occupy 
Charikar,  in  the  Kohistan,  with  a  view  to  domi- 
nating that  disaffected  district,  in  which  insurrection 
had  been  put  down  with  a  strong  hand  the  previous 
autumn  by  a  brigade  under  Sir  Robert  Sale.  The 
Ex-Amir  Dost  Mohammed  Khan  had,  it  is  true, 
most  unexpectedly  surrendered  himself  to  Sir 
William  Macnaghten  in  November,  1840,  and  had 
been  deported  to  India;  but  his  son,  Mohammed 
Akbar  Khan,  a  dangerous  enemy,  was  at  large  in 
Badakhshan,  and  the  Kohistanis  were  known  to  be, 
to  a  man,  his  partisans. 

Charikar  lies  forty  miles  due  north  of  Kabul,  as 
the  crow  flies,  and  is  a  most  important  strategical 
point,  commanding  the  junction  of  several  passes 
over  the  Hindu  Kush  with  the  roads  leading  to 
Bamian,  Kabul,  and  through  Nijrao  to  Jalalabad. 
The  place  had    been   held   all    the  winter   by  the 


SITUATION  AT   CHARIKAR.  33 

Kohistan  Rangers,  under  Lieutenant  Maule  of  the 
Bengal  Artillery.  Here,  as  elsewhere,  the  authori- 
ties had  tried  the  impossible  experiment  of  enlisting 
Afghan  Irregulars  in  the  so-called  service  of  our 
puppet  Shah  Shuja  —  irregulars  who  invariably 
deserted  or  even  turned  upon  us  on  the  first 
opportunity.  To  raise  a  corps  of  Kohistanis  to 
keep  their  own  fellow-rebels  in  order  was  certainly 
a  remarkable  thing  to  attempt.  A  sense  of  the 
untrustworthiness  of  the  Kohistan  Rangers,  as  well 
as  apprehension  of  what  Mohammed  Akbar  Khan 
might  do,  no  doubt  induced  Macnaghten  and 
Elphinstone  to  send  the  Gurkhas  to  Charikar  and 
move  the  Rangers  back  to  Kardarrah,  about  half- 
way betwen  Charikar  and  Kabul.  The  officers 
then  with  the  Gurkhas  were — Captain  Codrington 
(commandant).  Lieutenant  Haughton  (adjutant), 
Ensign  Salisbury  (quartermaster),  and  Ensign  Rose 
(subaltern).*  There  were  also  two  British  non-com- 
missioned officers.  Sergeant  -  Major  B^^ne  and 
Quartermaster-Sergeant  Hanrahan.  On  its  arrival 
at  Charikar  the  Gurkha  resfiment  found  neither 
barracks  nor  defences.  Officers  and  men  all  re- 
mained under  canvas  for  some  months,  while  the 
quasi-fortified  barracks  which  had  been  commenced 
by  Lieutenant  Maule  and  his  Kohistanis  were 
being  completed  by  the  Gurkhas.     As  a  matter  of 

*  Lieutenant  W.  Broadfoot,  the  second  in  command,  was  with  Sir 
Alex.  Burnes  in  Kabul,  and  was  there  murdered  with  him  on 
November  2,  1841,  the  day  before  Rattray  was  shot  down  at  Charikar. 
Thus,  as  will  be  seen  later  on,  the  only  British  officer  of  this  regiment 
who  lived  to  return  to  India  was  Lieutenant  Haughton. 

D 


34  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

fact,  they  never  were  completed.     The  insurrection 
which  broke  out  in  and  around  Kabul  at  the  begin- 
ning of  November,  1841,  found  Captain  Codrington 
and    his    regiment   anything    but    prepared    for   a 
defence.     A  plot  of  ground  about  a  hundred  yards 
square    had   been    enclosed    by  mud   walls    "  from 
seven  to  twenty  feet  high,"  on  the  inside  of  which 
flat-roofed  rooms  for  the  men  had  been  built.     The 
officers'  quarters   were   on    the   west   side.      Each 
corner  of   the   enclosure   was   bastioned   after   the 
manner  of  the  native  forts.     There  was  no  water- 
supply    in    the    fort.       That    from    the     canal    or 
from    the    Khwaja-seh-yaran  stream    could    be  cut 
off   at  once  by  a  besieging  enemy.     The  eastern 
entrance  had  no  gate,    and    the    quarters   had  no 
doors.      The    interior   of  the  barrack  square    was 
commanded  from  the  trees  that  bordered  the  canal, 
a  hundred  yards  distant,  and  by  the  high  towers  of 
Khwaja    Mir    Khan's    fort,    distant    four    hundred 
yards.     Although  "  Brown  Bess"  in  those  days  had 
only  an  effective  range  of  about  two  hundred  yards, 
the  Afghan  jezail  was  effective  at  six  hundred  yards, 
according   to    Sir    Sydney   Cotton,  or  even   up  to 
eight    hundred,    according    to    Captain    Augustus 
Abbott.    Kaye  and  Eyre  both  describe  the  Afghans 
as    laughing  at  our  musket-fire,   and  in    1842   the 
Adjutant-general  of  the  Bengal   army  proposed  to 
arm  our  troops  with  jezails  instead  of  muskets.*     It 
will  thus  be  seen  that  Khwaja  Mir  Khan's  fort,  in 

*   Vide  "  Sixty  Years  of  Frontier  Warfare,"  in  the  Journal  of  the 
Royal  U.S.  Instiiution  for  March,  1900,  pp.  2;^%,  239. 


PLAN  OF  CHAREEKAR 


-    EX  PLAN  ATION   — 

Caiuil  So  i/iiiM  fmii:  Fori,  :o  ful  imric  ill  lop,  Willi  .t/ii/Diiiy  kaiih, 

onijiiiidjfiii  hija.  iioir  Alii  6  i.iila  off. 

Fort  A  offtotrj  i/uiirlrrj  H bu.ilion    blown  up  C-l'iistwn  mill  a  ipiit 

iC pr    btloiiguttj  lo  Shall  Saojiih  ilii  WtH  l>a.ilioii,i,  noipuij, 

\)  Miya:mr  porilfi  flUd  m   with  latlli. 

X:R,a,iiiiard  of  Goorkliii  litf/' , 

V  III  lliij  i/atttoay  a  hcaoij  natioc yiin    on  IS  p-^, 
-  It  iki  Quarter-  Guard  of  the  lic^' 

0-posiiion-  occupied  I'lf  3000  .ifcjhaiijimdrrjhak  Malioiiicd 

♦   Black  cron   -  Cap*  Codruu/lon  and  Lirut^Saliehuri/ bunerl.  litre 

0  Fit  UL  mltuh  .Scpotfs  totrt  hiiricd 
\   F,  nurial  ylacc   of  D' Lord,  Lunl' On-istic  ^  Bnadfiot 
'  -H^l-iltrd  m    iSiO 


FROM    ACCOUNT   GIVEN    BY   MOTEERAM   HAVILDAR.AND  FILLED 
;OLL 

•  of  l-ii,i,p,ivi  offi. 


IN    FROM    COL    HAUGHTONS  RECOLLECTIONS  OF  THE  PLACE 


^TTZ 


czi  izi:  1=] 


D^D 


^t-^t^ 


■  pcviiphlct,  "  riit  Siege  of  Chiiritar,"  published  by  Colonel  J.  C.  HauCHTON, 


ELD  RED   POTTINGER.  35 

the  hands  of  an  enemy,  would  seriously  menace  the 
security  of  the  Gurkha  barracks.  The  masjid, 
target-butt,  banks  of  the  canal  and  trees  bordering 
it,  walled  vineyards  and  gardens,  the  mess-house, 
stables  and  huts  for  married  sepoys,  and  the  fakir's 
hut,  all  afforded  cover  to  assailants  {vide  plan 
attached). 

About  two  and  a  half  miles  to  the  south  {i.e.  on 
the  Kabul  side)  of  Charikar  lay  a  fortified  native 
residence,  called  Lughmani  or  Lughman  Ghari.  In 
this  dwelt  the  political  agent.  Major  Eldred  Pot- 
tinger,  the  gallant  defender  of  Herat  in  1837  against 
the  Persians.  With  him  was  his  assistant.  Lieutenant 
Rattray,  Dr.  Grant,  a  company  of  Gurkhas,  and  a 
number  of  Afghan  levy-men. 

The  rising  of  the  Kohistanis  commenced  at 
Lughmani.  Warning  had  not  been  wanting.  In- 
deed, both  Eldred  Pottinger  in  the  Kohistan  and 
Henry  Rawlinson  at  Kandahar  had  long  been 
warning  the  envoy.  Sir  William  Macnaghten,  that 
there  was  no  loyalty  towards  Shah  Shuja  among 
the  Afghans.  But  the  envoy  pooh-poohed  them  as 
alarmists.  He  little  foresaw  that  he  was  paving 
the  way  for  his  own  fate  and  that  of  the  whole  army 
of  occupation  at  Kabul. 

Whether  Major  Eldred  Pottinger  was  fully 
aware  of  the  danger  that  was  impending,  cannot 
now  be  ascertained.  Probably  he  was  not.  It 
seems  certain  that  on  the  2nd,  if  not  on  the  ist  of 
November,  Mir  Masjidi,  the  most  turbulent  of  the 
Kohistani   chiefs,   was   already  on   tlie   move   from 


36  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Nijrao,  across  the  plain  of  Barikat,  with  thousands 
of  followers,  and  by  the  morning  of  November  3, 
if  not  earlier,  had  taken  up  a  position  at  Aksarai, 
barring-  the  road  to  Kabul.  Had  Pottinger  been 
cognizant  of  this  move — as,  according  to  Kaye  and 
Eyre,  he  was — would  he,  on  November  3,  have 
admitted,  as  he  did,  a  number  of  Kohistani  maliks 
or  head-men  to  his  fort,  and  others  of  minor  stand- 
ing into  his  garden  ?  And  would  he  have  allowed 
his  assistant.  Lieutenant  Rattray,  to  go  outside 
the  fort  with  some  of  these  maliks  ?  Rattray, 
once  outside,  was  treacherously  shot  down.  At  the 
sound  of  firing,  the  chiefs  who  were  with  Major 
Pottinger  in  the  garden  rose  and  fled,  while  he 
himself  escaped  by  the  postern  gate  into  the  fort. 
His  Gurkha  guard  at  once  turned  out,  and  manning 
the  walls,  checked  the  attack  with  which  the  fort 
was  threatened,  and  cleared  the  open  ground  of 
the  Kohistanis,  who  then,  taking  cover  in  ditches 
and  behind  walls,  continued  to  harry  the  defenders 
of  the  fort,  or  rather  of  the  four  small  forts  or 
enclosures,  occupied  by  the  political  agent  with 
his  escort  and  following.  Captain  Codrington  had 
gone,  as  it  chanced,  that  morning  from  Charikar  to 
Lughmani  to  see  Major  Pottinger,  and  was  with  him 
when  Rattray  was  shot  down.  Lieutenant  Haugh- 
ton  at  Charikar,  hearing  the  sound  of  firing  (at 
about  2  p.m.),  started  off  at  once  with  120  rifles,  and 
finding  the  Pathans  swarming  among  the  walled 
ofardens  round  Pottins^er's  fort,  charo^ed  and  drove 
them    out.     Codrineton   at   the   same   time   sallied 


RISING   IN   THE   KO  HIS  TAN.  2t7 

forth  and  effected  a  junction  with  Haughton.  It 
was  by  this  time  beginning  to  get  dark  ;  so,  having 
strengthened  the  garrison  of  Lughmani  to  120  men, 
and  having  arranged  to  send  Major  Pottinger  some 
provisions  and  ammunition  at  dawn  on  the  following 
day,  Codrington  returned  with  Haughton  and  his 
men  to  Charikar. 

It  was  probably  on  November  3  that  the 
Kohistan  Rangers  rose  at  Kardarrah,  murdered 
their  commandant  (Lieutenant  Maule),  adjutant 
(Lieutenant  Wheeler),  sergeant-major,  and  quarter- 
master-sergeant, and  then  marched  off  to  join 
Mir  Masjidi  and  swell  the  thousands  already 
thronging  round  Charikar.  Lieutenant  Rattray's 
Afghan  levies  at  Lughmani,  who  throughout  the 
year  1840  at  Bamian,  and  subsequently  at  Charikar, 
had  remained  faithful,  deserted  and  joined  the 
rebels,  as  soon  as  their  quondam  chief  was  shot 
down. 

Kaye,  Eyre,  Pottinger,  Stocqueler,  Haughton, 
and  Low  have  all  told  the  tale  of  the  defence  of 
Charikar.  From  me  only  a  brief  summary  is 
needed.  The  siege  lasted  from  the  4th  to  the  13th 
of  November.  Had  the  garrison  been  well  posted, 
and  supplied  with  water,  food,  and  ammunition,  its 
fate  would  have  only  been  postponed.  The  help 
that  was  hoped  for  from  Kabul  was  hoped  for  in 
vain ;  for  Kabul  was  in  only  less  dire  straits  than 
Charikar.  Had  Sir  William  Macnaghten  and 
General  Elphinstone  been  made  of  the  same  stuff 
as  Eldred   Pottinger  and  John  Colpoys  Haughton, 


G57321 


38  JOHN  HAUGIirON. 

Kabul  and  perhaps  Charikar  also  might  have  been 
saved.  General  Elphinstone  was  a  broken-down 
invalid,  while  Macnaghten  was  one  of  those  clever 
emanations  of  an  Indian  Secretariat,  whom  Vice- 
roys and  Members  of  Council  sometimes  delight  to 
honour.  He  was  a  man  without  ballast,  making 
his  wish  the  father  to  his  thought,  turning  a  deaf 
ear  to  the  earnest  warnings  of  his  subordinates,  at 
one  moment  seeing  all  things  couleur  de  rose,  at 
another  querulously  charging  his  political  and 
military  assistants  alike  with  incapacity.  Unfor- 
tunately, he  was  able  to  work  the  ruin  of  more  than 
one  good  staunch  soldier.  In  1841  the  Political 
Service  in  India  still  exercised  that  control  over 
troops  in  the  field  which  the  Duke  of  Wellington, 
writing  to  Lord  Ellenborough  in  April,  1843,  so 
strongly  condemned,  and  which  now,  happily,  is  no 
longer  allowed,  although  there  is  undue  interference 
still.  The  political  officer's  duties  should  now  be 
consigned  to  the  Intelligence  and  Commissariat 
Departments.  The  political  officer  on  active  ser- 
vice is  no  longer  needed,  if  indeed  he  was  ever 
needed.  The  combined  incapacity  and  inaction  of 
Macnaghten  and  Elphinstone  placed  Major  Eldred 
Pottinger  and  Shah  Shuja's  Gurkhas  in  an  inde- 
fensible position,  and  gave  them,  as  a  support,  a 
corps  (the  Kohistan  Rangers)  which  could  not  be 
trusted,  and  which,  when  the  outbreak  in  and  around 
Kabul  did  take  place,  by  revolting  deprived  the 
garrison  of  Charikar  of  its  sole  chance  of  escape. 
It  remains  now  only  to  tell  how  for  ten  days  they 


MACNAGHTEN  AND   ELPHINSTONE.  39 

struggled  against  the  thousands  (twenty  to  twenty- 
five  thousand  is  the  variously  estimated  number)  who 
hemmed  them  in,  against  the  tortures  of  thirst,  and 
against  the  exhaustion  of  hunger ;  for  though  they 
had  food,  it  could  not  be  cooked  or  eaten  without 
water. 

On  November  4,  before  dawn,  Haughton,  ac- 
companied by  Ensign  Salisbury  and  Quartermaster- 
Sergeant  Hanrahan,  one  6-pounder  gun,  and  two 
hundred  Gurkhas,  started  for  Lughmani.  Several 
ponies,  loaded  with  provisions  and  ammunition, 
went  with  him.  As  Lughmani  was  approached, 
seven  or  eight  hundred  Afghans  were  seen  on 
the  right.  Ensign  Salisbury  was  detached  to  hold 
them  in  check,  while  Haughton  carried  out  his  duty 
of  handing  over  the  supplies  and  ammunition  to 
Major  Pottinger.  The  Afghans,  however,  now  com- 
menced to  swarm  in  from  all  sides,  and  Haughton 
had  to  send  Quartermaster  -  Sergeant  Hanrahan 
to  extricate  Salisbury.  Haughton  meantime  was 
halted  five  hundred  yards  from  Lughmani,  waiting 
in  vain  for  the  party  which,  as  arranged,  was  to 
come  out  and  take  over  the  supplies  and  ammuni- 
tion. Finally,  he  was  obliged,  to  prevent  his 
retreat  being  cut  off,  to  retire  on  Charikar.  The 
country  was  alive  with  the  enemy.  When  Salis- 
bury did  return,  hard  pressed  by  the  Afghans, 
Quartermaster  -  Sergeant  Hanrahan  was  severely 
wounded,  and  many  men  had  fallen.  The  6-pounder 
gun  was  their  salvation,  for  the  enemy  feared  to 
close  with  that.     This  gun,   Haughton,  aided  by  a 


40  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

few  men,  most  gallantly  worked  throughout  the 
retreat  of  three  miles.  Salisbury,  however,  was 
mortally  wounded,  and  many  Gurkhas  fell.  None 
who  fell  could  be  saved. 

After  Haughton's  return,  measures  were  taken 
by  Captain  Codrington  and  him  to  prepare  to  stand 
a  siege.  All  provisions  were  brought  inside  the 
square.  A  Subedar  and  fifty  rifles  were  posted  in 
the  tower  of  Khwaja  Mir  Khan's  fort,  which  com- 
manded the  barracks  at  a  range  of  four  hundred 
yards.  On  examining  the  provisions  and  stores  of 
ammunition,  they  found  that  they  had  food  for  seven 
days,  two  hundred  rounds  per  musket,  and  about 
sixty  rounds  per  gun.  When  these  were,  later  on, 
exhausted,  old  lead,  nails,  copper  money,  links  of 
chain  and  blank  cartridges  were  used  in  lieu  of 
grape  and  canister  for  the  guns. 

By  the  afternoon  the  Gurkha  barracks  were 
hemmed  in  on  all  sides.  Desultory  fighting  went 
on  till  dark.  The  Afghans  cut  off  the  water- 
supply.  From  that  time  the  garrison  was  depen- 
dent on  a  few  pools  left  in  the  bed  of  the  canal 
and  in  a  small  pit  near  the  barracks,  from  which 
earth  had  been  dug  to  make  bricks. 

About  9  p.m.  Haughton  started  with  a  single 
orderly  to  reconnoitre  towards  Lughmani,  in  the 
hopes  of  being  able  to  communicate  with  Pottinger. 
Before  he  had  gone  far,  sounds  indicated  that  a 
party  of  some  sort,  friend  or  foe,  was  approaching. 
To  his  joy,  he  found  it  was  Major  Pottinger  and 
all   his   following.     Convinced   that  his  position  at 


,[£Mh^ 


AN    AFRlUt    TOWER. 


INVESTMENT  COMMENCES.  4 1 

Lughmani  was  untenable,  and  relief  improbable, 
Pottinger  had  decided  to  make  an  effort  to  gain 
Charikar  by  stealth,  abandoning  almost  all  the 
baggage.  Fortune  favoured  him.  The  Afghans 
had  not  invested  Charikar  so  closely  as  they  did 
a  day  or  two  later.  Thus  the  whole  British  force 
was  able  to  unite  and  live  or  die  together.  It  was 
mostly  to  die.  The  joy  of  escape  was,  however, 
marred  by  finding  that  some  of  Pottinger's  Gurkha 
escort  were  missing.  Two  nights  later  they  turned 
up,  having  held  their  own  without  food  and  water 
against  the  Afghans,  who  feared  to  attack  men 
accessible  only  by  a  ladder  and  through  a  trap-door, 
and  who  probably  abstained  from  burning  them  out 
in  the  firm  assurance  that  they  must  very  soon  be 
starved  out. 

November  5  was  one  stern  struggle  for  exist- 
ence from  morning  to  night.  The  Afghans,  at 
least  twenty  thousand  in  number,  swarmed  to  the 
attack  from  all  sides.  "  Their  very  numbers,"  says 
Haughton  in  his  account,  "gave  us  nerve."  The 
garrison  still  hoped  for  relief  from  Kabul.  Major 
Pottinger  on  his  arrival  had  at  once  volunteered  for 
service,  and,  being  an  artillery  officer,  was  instructed 
to  take  charge  of  the  guns.  Captain  Codrington 
continued  to  exercise  the  command.  The  rules  of 
the  service,  even  in  those  days,  did  not  allow 
a  political  officer  to  avail  himself  of  his  superior 
rank  to  supersede  a  military  officer ;  though  Major 
Pottinger  had  no  such  thought.  The  same  spirit 
animated  him  that  made  Viscount   liardinge  serve 


42  JOHN  H AUG H TON. 

as  a  volunteer   under   Gough   in   the   Panjab,  and 
Outram  under  Havelock  in  the  Mutiny. 

The  main  object  of  the  garrison  was  to  keep 
their  hokl  on  the  canal  for  the  sake  of  the  pools  of 
water  in  it.  Therefore  the  gardens  and  vineyards 
along  the  canal  banks  were  occupied  and  tenaciously 
held.  Here  Haughton  remained  all  day,  ever  on 
the  move  from  one  point  to  another.  For  he  found 
that  when  he  or  some  other  British  officer  or  non- 
commissioned officer  was  not  there,  the  Gurkhas 
showed  a  tendency  to  yield  before  the  thousands 
that  threatened  them.  Codrington  was  in  chief 
command,  Pottinger  worked  the  guns  from  the 
barracks,  Salisbury  was  dying,  and  Hanrahan  in- 
capacitated by  his  wound.  Haughton  and  Rose 
and  Sergeant- Major  Byrne  were  the  only  three 
Englishmen  available  to  keep  the  Gurkha  picquets 
staunch.  So  Haughton  never  left  his  outposts. 
In  the  forenoon  came  the  intelligence  that  Pottinger 
was  severely  wounded  in  the  thigh.  At  noon  came 
the  still  graver  news  that  Codrington  had  fallen. 
It  was  not,  however,  till  dusk  that  Haughton  felt 
justified  in  leaving  his  post  and  going  to  see  Cod- 
rington. He  found  him  shot  throus^h  the  chest 
and  dying.  The  parting  scene  between  them  was 
a  most  affecting  one,  but  duty  made  it  imperative 
for  Haughton  to  return  to  his  outposts.  With 
them  he  stayed  all  night.  He  has  recorded  that 
throughout  the  siege,  and  for  a  week  or  two  after 
it,  sleep  entirely  left  him.  "  My  usual  post  at  night, 
when  not  moving  about,   was  in  a  chair  near  the 


HEAVY  CASUALTIES.  43 

east  gate"  (the  i8-pounder  gun  was  there),  "  where 
I  soothed  my  nerves  with  a  cheroot." 

At  daybreak  on  the  6th,  the  Afghan  attack  re- 
commenced with  renewed  vigour.  The  Gurkhas, 
under  Haughton,  Rose,  and  Byrne,  fought  all  day, 
but  in  the  evening  were  compelled  to  withdraw 
from  the  outposts  in  the  gardens.  Their  numbers 
were  much  diminished,  and  the  men  worn  out  by 
fasting  and  fatigue  ;  furthermore,  the  pools  in  the 
canal  were  now  empty.  During  the  day  Sergeant- 
Major  Byrne  was  mortally  wounded,  and  Codring- 
ton  breathed  his  last.  Salisbury  had  passed  from 
unconsciousness  to  death  the  previous  afternoon. 
Secretly  and  silently,  on  the  night  of  the  6th, 
Haughton,  Grant,  and  Rose  dug  a  grave  and  com- 
mitted to  it  the  remains  of  Codrington  and  Salis- 
bury. The  grave  was  smoothed  down  and  straw 
burnt  over  it,  as  Haughton  wished  to  keep  the  sad 
news  as  much  as  possible  from  his  men.  Haughton 
had  had  the  narrowest  escapes.  One  Pathan  shot 
at  him  at  two  paces'  distance  and  missed  him. 
Again  a  bullet  passed  through  his  orderly's  head 
and  struck  him  so  severely  on  the  throat  that  he 
fell  paralyzed.  His  men  were  dragging  both  away 
for  dead,  by  the  legs,  when  Haughton  came  to  and 
objected  to  that  mode  of  progression.  They  then 
lifted  his  head  too.  He  soon  recovered  and  resumed 
his  duties.  When  night  fell,  he  went  to  the  doctor, 
who  examined  his  neck.  The  thick  silk  Multani 
handkerchief  he  wore  had  saved  him  from  anything 
more  than  an  abrasion  and  momentary  loss  of  power. 


44  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

On  the  7th  the  enemy  formed  a  complete  cordon 
round  the  barracks,  keeping  just  out  of  musket- 
range.  They  took  cover  in  the  vineyards  and 
canal-bed,  in  the  stables  and  mess-house,  behind 
the  target-butt  and  in  the  fakir's  hut  and  enclosure. 
Bullets  began  to  drop  in  the  interior  of  the  barrack 
square ;  and  it  was  presently  ascertained  that  they 
came  from  Khwaja  Mir  Khan's  fort,  the  garrison 
of  which  had  surrendered.  Bullets  also  came  in 
freely  through  the  east  gate.  The  only  available 
form  of  traverse  was  to  use  the  walls  of  tents  as 
screens.  These  were  put  up  along  the  north  wall 
and  behind  the  men  defending  the  south  wall,  and 
just  inside  the  east  gate.  They  could  not  stop 
bullets,  but  they  stopped  the  firing  of  the  enemy, 
who  did  not  care  to  fire  aimlessly. 

On  the  8th  the  Afghans  made  overtures,  under 
the  pretext  of  arranging  terms  of  surrender,  and 
several  of  them  were  admitted  to  see  Major 
Pottinger.  It  was  felt,  however,  that  they  were 
rather  spies  than  envoys,  and  treachery  was 
feared.  Their  presence,  too,  had  no  good  effect 
on  the  Gurkhas.  During  the  day  the  garrison 
buried  the  dead,  forty-four  in  all.  All  who  fell 
outside  the  walls  had  to  lie  unburied,  as  well  as  the 
horses  and  cattle.  The  stench  from  them  became 
abominable.  The  siege  had  now  changed  from  an 
active  attack  into  a  passive  beleaguerment.  The 
enemy  formed  a  complete  cordon  round  the  barracks, 
keeping  well  under  cover,  and  harrying  the  de- 
fenders with  their  fire  as  opportunity  offered.     All 


WATER   EXHAUSTED.  45 

night  drums  were  beat  to  worry  and  wear  out  the 
garrison,  by  keeping  it  continually  on  the  alert. 
This  drum-beating  was  done  by  the  Afghan  non- 
combatants,  while  the  warriors  took  their  rest.  On 
the  9th  Haughton  was  struck  on  the  elbow  by  a 
spent  ball.  A  painful  bruise  was  the  only  result.  On 
the  night  of  the  9th  loud  singing  commenced  oppo- 
site the  south-east  corner,  and  soon  after  midnight 
an  explosion  took  place.  The  enemy  simultaneously 
opened  fire  from  all  sides,  but  did  not  attempt  an 
assault.  Had  they  done  so,  they  would  probably 
have  carried  the  place  in  the  confusion.  Haughton, 
with  his  reserve,  was  at  the  breach  in  a  moment  or 
two,  and  barricaded  it.  It  transpired  that  a  Pathan 
had  crept  up  to  the  bastion,  dug  a  hole,*  filled  it 
with  powder,  tamped  and  exploded  it.  The  singing 
was  to  drown  the  noise  of  digging.  Precautions 
were  now  taken  to  prevent  this  recurring. 

On  the  nth  the  last  drop  of  water  was  doled 
out.  Hindus  as  these  Gurkhas  were,  and  sensitive 
on  all  points  of  caste,  they  yet  begged  that  Haughton 
himself  should  divide  fairly  and  distribute  the  little 
water  left.  Such  was  the  faith  of  the  Indian  in 
British  impartiality.  The  sheep  belonging  to  the 
officers'  mess  were  now  given  to  the  Gurkhas  ;  but 
they  said  they  could  not  eat  the  meat,  as  it  only 
made  them  more  thirsty.  Many  sucked  the  raw 
flesh  to  assuage  their  thirst.  Signs  of  disaffection 
among  the  Mohammedan  gunners  began  to  show 

*   It  was  in   this  way  that  the  now  famous  Sarajjarhi  Post  was 
taken  in  September,  1S97. 


46  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

themselves.  One  had  deserted,  and  the  others  had 
all  asked  for  their  pay,  though  they  could  have  no 
possible  use  for  it.  On  the  nights  of  the  nth  and 
1 2th,  sorties  were  made  in  order  to  obtain  water. 
The  result  was  a  severe  conflict  with  the  Pathan 
picquets,  who  were  surprised  and  suffered  heavily ; 
but  no  water  was  brought  in.  On  the  13th  it 
became  perfectly  evident  that,  there  being  no  water, 
the  garrison  could  not  hold  out  longer.  A  council 
was  held  in  Major  Pottinger's  room.  It  was  decided 
that  the  only  plan  that  promised  any  chance  of  success 
was  to  endeavour  to  reach  Kabul,  avoiding  the  main 
road.     The  start  was  fixed  for  midnight. 

Of  the  original  garrison  of  740  men  ("  of  whom 
half  were  recruits,"  says  Haughton)  fully  100  had 
now  been  killed  and  50  taken  prisoners,  while  some 
200  wounded  thronged  eight  of  the  barrack-rooms. 
Thus  less  than  400  men,  exhausted  with  fatigue 
and  privation,  remained.  There  were  also  about 
100  women,  40  children,  and  100  followers.  Of  the 
56  Punjabi  gunners  12  had  been  killed:  Haughton 
had  been  warned  that  the  remainder  were  not  to 
be  trusted,  but  he  could  not  afford  either  to  arrest 
them  or  turn  them  out  of  barracks.  As  events 
proved,  he  paid  dearly  for  his  dependence  on 
them. 

Towards  the  afternoon  of  the  13th  he  went  up 
on  to  the  north-east  bastion  to  find  out  the  reason 
for  a  sudden  cessation  in  the  firing.  Ensign  Rose 
went  with  him,  and  the  subadar  of  artillery  followed. 
A  man   was  seen  approaching  the  barracks.     He 


TREACHEROUS  ATTACK  ON  HAUGHTON.       47 

turned  out  to  be  the  artillery  deserter.     To  quote 
Haughton's  own  account : — 

"  It  was  plain  that  the  enemy  had  sent  him,  probably 
to  offer  terms  ;  and  as  I  was  quite  determined  not  to  make 
any,  being  completely  assured  that  none  made  with  us 
would  be  kept,  I  felt  it  of  importance  to  prevent  his  holding 
any  communication  with  the  men.  At  this  time  I  was 
unarmed.  I  met  the  man  as  he  came  in,  and  seized  him 
by  the  collar  with  my  left  hand  as  he  attempted  to  pass 
me.  Instantly  he  threw  himself  on  the  ground,  I  still 
holding  him.  This  reduced  me  to  a  stooping  posture,  in 
which  I  received  a  tremendous  blow  on  the  neck,  which  I 
conjecture  was  followed  by  one  or  two  more.  I  started, 
letting  go  my  man  and  turning  round,  at  the  same  time 
feeling  a  sharp  pain  in  my  right  wrist.  I  saw  the  blood 
spouting  in  a  long  jet  from  it  and  the  subadar  glaring  at 
me  like  a  demon,  holding  a  sword  with  both  hands  and 
in  the  act  of  striking  at  me  again.  All  this  was  the  work 
of  an  instant.  I  had  the  whole  of  the  muscles  on  one  side 
of  the  back  of  my  neck  severed,  a  severe  cut  into  the  right 
shoulder-joint,  another  in  the  right  wrist  nearly  severing 
my  hand,  and  a  fourth  in  the  left  forearm  splintering  the 
bone.  I  retreated  up  a  ladder  to  the  roof  of  the  barracks 
and  shouted  *  Treachery ! '  calling  on  the  men  to  fire  on  the 
gunners  who  were  escaping  en  masse.  I,  however,  after 
having  the  limb  with  its  spouting  artery  bound,  found  myself 
so  faint  from  loss  of  blood  that  I  could  not  stand.  I  was 
conducted  between  two  men  into  the  lower  story  of  the 
building,  in  which  was  Pottinger,  and  was  laid  on  a  bed. 
The  enemy  made  a  most  vigorous  attack  on  all  sides. 
Pottinger  had  himself  carried  to  the  gate  where  the  doctor, 
with  one  or  two  men,  vigorously  worked  the  i8-pounder, 
and  by  dark  the  enemy  had  been  completely  repulsed.  I 
heard  afterwards  that  the  artillerymen,  seeing  our  affairs 


48  JOHN  ITAUGHTON. 

were  desperate,  thought  it  best  to  make  terms  for  them- 
selves. The  arrangement  was  that  they  were  to  kill  me, 
as  a  proof  of  their  zeal,  and  go  over  to  the  enemy,  who 
were  to  make  a  general  attack  in  the  confusion  which 
would  ensue,  and  take  the  place  by  escalade  ;  it  was 
expected  no  one  would  remain  to  work  the  guns.  On  this 
point,  and  in  the  anticipated  success,  calculations  failed. 
It  appears  that  from  some  sign  the  subadar  understood 
all  was  settled.  He,  therefore,  when  I  left  his  side, 
snatched  a  sword  from  the  hands  of  Ensign  Rose  and 
followed  me." 

With  the  fall  of  Haughton  discipline  ceased  to 
have  any  hold  on  the  Gurkhas  and  followers.  Men, 
women,  and  children  loaded  themselves  with  any- 
thing they  could  find.  The  money  in  the  treasure- 
chest  was  divided.  Dr.  Grant  spiked  the  guns  ; 
and  when  all  was  ready,  the  doctor  amputated 
Haughton's  right  hand  at  the  wrist-joint.  The  only 
liquid  in  the  fort  was  some  ether,  and  with  that  he 
was  revived  and  stimulated.  Set  on  a  horse,  with 
a  man  holding  him  on  either  side,  he  was  led 
to  the  parade-ground,  which  had  been  selected  as 
the  place  of  rendezvous.  Half  the  natives  were  not 
there.  Time  was  too  precious  to  allow  of  long 
waiting.  The  Gurkhas,  moreover,  were  quite  out 
of  hand.  The  party  marched  off.  At  the  first 
water  many  remained.*    The  numbers  of  the  party 

*  It  is  known  that  165  of  these  Gurkha  soldiers  rejoined,  when  Sir 
George  Pollock  reoccupied  Kabul  in  September  to  October,  1S42. 
Some  few  turned  Mohammedans  and  settled  in  the  Kohistan.  It  is 
evident  that  the  Afghans  spared  many  of  these  Gurkhas,  and  probably 
also  of  the  women,  children,  and  followers.  Those  spared  would  be 
forced  to  profess  the  Mohammedan  faith.      What   became  of  the 


POTTINGER'S  LOYALTY   TO   HAUGHTON.         49 

gradually  dwindled  until  only  seven  or  eight  were 
left.     Major  Pottinger,  who  knew  that  in  speed  and 
secrecy  alone  lay  any  chance  of  escape,  determined 
to  push  on.     When   daylight  broke   the    fugitives 
concealed  themselves  in  a  nullah.     The  party  now 
consisted  of  Major  Pottinger;  Lieutenant  Haughton ; 
Mohan    Bir,    the    major's    munshi  ;     Man    Singh, 
Haughton's  orderly,*  and  a  native  sutler.     During 
the  day  parties  of  Afghans  were  seen  searching  the 
surrounding   hills.      One   party    came   within    200 
yards  of  their  place  of  concealment,  but  turned  back 
without  seeing  them.     Their  sole  sustenance  con- 
sisted of  dried  mulberries  and   water.     The  ether 
was   used   to    sustain    Haughton.     At    dark    they 
started  again,  straight  across  the  hills.     They  dare 
not    follow    the     beaten     tracks.       Several    times 
Haughton  slipped  off  his  horse,  and  in  his  helpless 
state  suffered  severely.     He  begged  to  be  left  to 
his  fate,  but  Major  Pottinger  "nobly  and  generously  " 
(to  use  Haughton's  own  words)  "refused  to  do  so." 
They  passed  a  nomad  encampment,  unnoticed  save 

renegade  Panjabis  I  have  been  unable  to  ascertain.     Dr.  Grant  and 
Ensign  Rose  were  both  killed. 

*  To  the  end  of  his  life  General  J.  C.  Haughton  continued  to  take 
the  deepest  interest  in  this  man.  He  was  rather  a  rolling  stone,  but 
finally  retired  from  the  service  of  Government  with  a  pension.  In  his 
letters  to  his  son  John  at  Benares,  Banda,  and  Cawnpore,  written 
between  1880  and  18S7,  the  General  asked  him  several  times  to  ascer- 
tain from  the  Pension  Paymaster  where  Man  Singh  was  drawing 
his  pension  and  how  he  was,  but  the  son  was  unsuccessful  in  obtain- 
ing any  news  of  him.  He,  however,  reports  to  his  father  that  Sir 
Herbert  McPherson,  and  Colonel  Hammond  and  Major  Carr  of  the 
5th  Punjab  Cavalry,  had  met  near  Kabul  one  or  two  Gurkhas  who 
had  survived  the  siege  of  Charikar.  They  told  McPherson  that  two 
only  of  those  who  had  remained  behind  in  Afghanistan  were  then  living. 

E 


50  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

by  the  barking  of  the  dogs,  and  at  last  reached  Deh- 
Afghan,  a  suburb  of  Kabul.  There  they  were 
challenged,  but  pushing  on  escaped  capture.  They 
reached  and  entered  the  city  of  Kabul.  Mohan  Bir 
and  the  sutler  sought  refuge  in  the  house  of  a 
Hindu  whom  they  knew,  but  Man  Singh  declined  to 
leave  his  master.  The  three — Pottinger,  Haughton, 
and  Man  Singh — pushed  on  through  the  city  into 
the  lane  leading  to  the  British  cantonment.  There 
an  Afghan  picquet  threatened,  at  the  last  moment, 
to  frustrate  all  their  hopes  and  efforts.  But,  as  usual 
in  the  early  hours  of  the  morning,  the  picquet  was 
asleep  and  the  sentry  drowsy.  The  fugitives  in  des- 
peration urged  on  their  weary  steeds.  Man  Singh, 
who  was  on  foot,  managed  to  keep  up  with  them. 
They  were  almost  past  the  picquet  when  it  turned  out. 
A  few  shots  were  fired  after  them  in  the  dark,  and 
missed  them.  The  pursuit  died  away.  They  were 
safe,  though  one  other  difficulty  lay  before  them — 
the  British  outposts  had  also  to  be  passed.  The 
firing  of  the  Afghan  picquet  had  put  them  on  the 
alert.  No  one  of  the  three  knew  the  countersign. 
This  danger,  however,  was  also  overcome,  and  a  few 
minutes  later  (as  Sir  Vincent  Eyre  wrote  at  the 
time  inhis  Journal)  "they  were  received  by  their 
brethren   in   arms  as  men  risen   from  the  dead."* 


*  Major  Eldred  Pottinger  remained  a  prisoner  in  the  hands  of 
Mohammed  Akbar  Khan  when  General  Elphinstone's  force  evacu- 
ated Kabul  in  January,  1842.  In  September  of  that  year  he  was 
rescued  from  his  captivity,  and  returned  to  India  with  General 
Pollock.  He  was  rewarded  for  his  services  with  the  Companionship 
of  the  Bath.     His  health  obliged  him  to  seek  a  change  of  climate. 


SICK  AND   A    PRISONER.  5 1 

The  goal  reached,  they  collapsed.  On  reaching  the 
cantonment  Haughton's  wounds  were,  for  the  first 
time,  properly  dressed.  His  recovery  was  slow.  On 
December  29,  1841,  before  General  Elphinstone 
evacuated  Kabul,  "all  the  sick  and  wounded  who 
were  considered  unable  to  bear  the  fatis^ues  of  the 
march  were  sent  into  the  city  (Kabul),  and  two 
medical  officers,  Doctors  Berwick  and  Campbell,  were 
appointed  to  take  charge  of  them."  *  Lieutenant 
Haughton  was  one  of  these.  There  he  remained 
till  the  end  of  August,  when  the  advance  of  General 
Pollock  obliged  Mohammed  Akbar  Khan  to  retire 
from  Kabul.  Lady  Sale,  who  was  one  of  the 
prisoners,  states  in  her  "Journal"  (p.  412)  that  most 
of  the  sick  left  at  Kabul  joined  them  at  their  place 
of  captivity  on  August  20,  1841,  and  that  Lieutenant 
Haughton  and  a  few  others  were  to  follow  as  soon 
as  transport  could  be  obtained  for  their  removal. 
From  this  it  would  seem  that  Lieutenant  Haughton 
had  not,  even  then,  thoroughly  recovered  from  his 
very  severe  wounds  and  from  the  terrible  exposure 
and  exertion  which  he  had  to  go  through,  for  forty 
hours  after  receiving  his  wound,  in  order  to  save  his 
life.  It  was  an  abnormal  test  of  streneth  of  will  and 
constitution.  He,  like  the  other  prisoners,  obtained 
his  release  on  the  approach  of  General  Pollock's 
army.  During  Pollock's  re-occupation  of  Kabul, 
he   served   with   George    Broadfoot's  Sappers  and 

He  died  at  Hong  Kong  on  November  13,  1S43,  ^l^e  first  anniversary  ot 
his  retreat  from  Charikar.     There  is  a  monument  to  his  memory  in 
the  Cathedral  at  Bombay. 
*  Kaye,  vol.  ii.  p.  1S2. 


52  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Miners  (Gurkhas) ;  165  men  of  his  old  corps,  who 
had  escaped  with  their  Hvcs,  came  in  and  rejoined 
him,  and  with  him  returned  to  India  in  October, 
1842.  He  was  then  at  once  sent  home  to  recruit 
his  health.  While  in  England  he  was  pressed  to 
publish  an  account  of  the  defence  of  Charikar,  but 
declined.  At  Brussels  he  met  the  lady,  Miss  Jessie 
Eleanor  Presgrave,  whom  he  afterwards  married 
at  Calcutta  in  June,  1845.  From  that  date,  till  his 
retirement  from  the  service  in  1873,  she  shared  with 
him  all  the  vicissitudes  of  an  Indian  career,  but 
died  within  a  few  months  of  her  return  to  Europe, 
at  the  age  of  forty-seven. 

The  Charikar  episode  was  the  stirring  incident 
of  General  J.  C.  Haughton's  life,  but  for  thirty-two 
years  after  that  he  continued  to  serve  the  Govern- 
ment of  India,  and  well  he  served  it.  In  November, 
1844,  he  was  appointed  second  in  command  of  the 
Bundelkhand  Service  Battalion,  whence  he  was 
transferred,  in  1846,  to  the  Chhota  Nagpur  Com- 
mission. During  the  rebellion  of  Ghoomsoor,  he 
served  with  the  Ramghar  Battalion,  and  was  pre- 
sent in  seven  affairs  with  the  enemy.  From  1853 
to  1862  he  served  in  Burma  and  the  Andaman 
Islands.  In  1862  he  was  appointed  Commissioner 
of  Assam  and  Governor-General's  Agent  for  the 
North-east  Frontier.  In  1862-63  he  was  engaged 
in  the  suppression  of  the  rebellion  in  Jyntia,  and  at 
the  end  of  1864  he  joined  the  Bhutan  Field  Force 
as  chief  civil  and  political  officer,  and  remained  with 
it  till  June,  1865,  being  present  at  the  storming  of 


SERVICES    FROM   1844    TC    1S73.  53 

Dalimkot  and  the  re- capture  of  Bala.  For  his  ser- 
vices on  this  occasion  he  received  the  Companion- 
ship of  the  Order  of  the  Star  of  India.  In  1S66  he 
was  appointed  the  Commissioner  of  the  Cooch- 
Behar  Division,  and  held  that  appointment  until  his 
retirement  in  1873.  The  following  resolution  was 
then  issued  by  the  Lieut.-Governor  of  Bengal : — 

"Colonel  J.  C.  Haughton,  C.S.I.,  Commissioner  of 
Cooch-Behar,  having  been  forced  by  ill-health  to  leave  the 
country,  notwithstanding  that  the  Secretary  of  State  had 
agreed  to  an  extension  of  his  service  in  consequence  of  his 
merits,  the  Lieut.-Governor  deems  it  right  to  express  the 
thanks  of  the  Government  to  this  distinguished  officer  for 
his  very  long  and  meritorious  services  to  the  Government 
of  Bengal.  Colonel  Haughton's  services  in  Cabul,  where 
severe  wounds  caused  him  the  loss  of  an  arm,  were  con- 
cluded before  he  joined  the  North-west  Frontier  Agency, 
under  this  Government,  in  the  year  1844.  Since  that  year 
he  has,  with  intervals  of  employment  under  the  Govern- 
ment of  India  at  Port  Blair  and  elsewhere,  served  in  the 
wilder  and  more  remote  districts  of  Bengal — from  Sumbal- 
por  and  Sungboom  on  the  west,  to  Bootan  on  the  north, 
and  Upper  Assam  on  the  extreme  east.  In  times  of  peace 
he  has  served  the  Government  well,  and  has  always  shown 
the  fullest  consideration  for  the  welfare  and  wants  of  all 
classes  under  his  administration  ;  he  has  always  exerted 
his  influence  in  behalf  of  the  wilder  races  ;  he  has  con- 
tributed much  to  the  pacific  solution  of  questions  regarding 
the  treatment  of  the  mountain  tribes  which  inhabit  the 
wilds  on  both  sides  of  the  Bcrampootra  Valley,  and  his 
loss  will  be  felt  in  future  discussion  on  the  Bootan  frontier. 
In  time  of  war  and  trouble  on  the  British  frontier  towards 
Bhootan,  in  the  Garrow  Hills,  in  the  Cossyah  and  Jyntia 


54  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Hills,  he  has  personally  done  the  very  greatest  services  in 
advising  and  directing  the  operations,  and  by  raising  levies 
of  hillmen  for  frontier  police  work  or  for  the  carriage  of 
materials.  His  last  piece  of  service  has  been  to  superin- 
tend, to  a  most  successful  termination,  an  expedition 
undertaken  this  cold  season  for  the  subjugation  of  the 
hitherto  independent  Garrows,  who  have  long  harassed  our 
district ;  he  has  managed  with  success  the  large  estate  of 
the  infant  Maharajah  of  Cooch-Bchar. 

"The  Lieut.-Governor  would  tender  his  thanks  to  Colonel 
Haughton  for  the  good  work  he  has  done  as  a  frontier 
officer,  as  a  district  officer,  and  as  a  commissioner  during 
the  last  thirty  years,  and  will  bring  them  prominently  to 
the  notice  of  the  Government  of  India  and  the  Secretary 
of  State." 

This  is  but  a  lukewarm  tribute  to  the  merits 
of  General  Haughton  compared  with  those  which 
appeared  in  the  Anglo-Indian  press  at  the  time 
of  his  death,  which  took  place  at  Ramsgate  on 
September  17,  1887.  One  writer  speaks  of  his 
"great  ability,  firmness,  and  justice,  combined  with 
a  high-minded  gentleness  which  won  the  hearts  of 
all,  natives  and  Europeans."  In  person  he  is 
described  as  "  over  six  feet  in  height,  with  a  spare, 
wiry  frame  capable  of  great  physical  endurance, 
aquiline  features  and  a  kindly  resolute  face." 

His  friends  felt  that  his  services  might  have 
received  some  more  substantial  recoofnition  than  a 
mere  C.S.I.  For  his  services  in  the  Afcjhan  War  he 
was  not  awarded  even  a  medal.  He  was  promised  a 
brevet  majority,  but  never  received  it.  When,  later 
on^  shortly  before  the  Mutiny,  Captain  Haughton 


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BREVET  AND   MEDAL  REFUSED.  55 

ventured  to  remind  the  authorities  of  this  promise, 
he  was  met  with  those  forms  of  red-tape  obstruction 
which  secretariats  know  so  well  how  to  use.  I  have 
before  me  a  kind  letter  (private,  not  official)  written 
to  Captain  J.  C.  Haughton  by  Colonel  Chester  from 
Simla  on  May  2,  1857,  a  few  days  before  the 
mutiny  at  Meerut  broke  out,  explaining  to  him 
that  the  Court  of  Directors  would  receive  memorials 
only,  not  letters.  At  the  end  of  this  letter  is  the 
following  note  in  Captain  J.  C.  Haughton's  hand- 
writing : — 

•'  This  is  from  Colonel  Chester,  at  that  time  Adjutant- 
General  of  the  Indian  Army.  The  memorial  in  triplicate 
was  duly  sent  in  and  returned  with  intimation  that  it  must 
be  sent  through  the  officer  commanding  the  54th  Bengal 
Native  Infantry,  the  regiment  in  the  army  list  on  which  my 
name  stood,  and  which  I  had  never  joined  or  seen  in  my 
life.  The  mutinies  came  on,  and  Colonel  Chester  was  one 
of  the  first  killed." 

His  own  persevering  representations,  and  those 
made  by  his  father  (the  professor  of  Oriental 
languages  at  Addiscombe)  on  his  behalf,  failed 
to  produce  any  effect.  To  a  man  in  civil  employ  a 
brevet  is  of  no  practical  use ;  but  the  honour  of  it 
is  valued.  Haughton  fought  the  stubborn  fight 
from  the  3rd  to  the  15th  November,  1841,  for  his 
own  and  other's  lives,  as  stoutly  as  a  man  could  fight 
it.  He  proved  the  sterling  stuff  of  which  he  was 
made.  He  wanted  the  Government  to  recognize  it 
publicly.  He  got,  however,  neither  a  brevet  nor 
a  medal.     I  have  known  many  a  man  since  get  a 


56  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

medal  without  seeing  a  single  shot  fired,  and  with- 
out doing  one  stroke  of  work  for  that  medal.  The 
man's  life,  however,  is  not  wasted  who  has  set  such 
an  example  to  the  Army,  and  who  gave  to  India 
three  sons  as  brave  and  noble  as  himself.  A  man 
has  not  served  in  vain  of  whom  after  his  death  it 
was  written  : — 

"  General  Haughton's  services  were  performed  in  days 
when  there  were  no  special  correspondents  and  no  telegraph 
to  India.  Men  quietly  and  nobly  did  their  duty,  and  died, 
or,  if  they  survived,  were  not  sought  out  with  feverish  haste 
to  receive  well-earned  rewards  ;  and  so  it  is  that  as  brave 
and  noble-minded  an  officer  as  ever  lived  goes  to  his  grave, 
after  performing  eminent  services  in  a  past  generation, 
with  nothing  more  than  a  C.S.I.  To  say  that  his  services 
were  not  adequately  recognized  is  saying  what  may  be 
said  of  many  an  old  officer  who  lived  and  fought  in  the 
time  when  duty,  and  not  decoration,  was  the  order  of  the 
day.  His  life  was  a  great  example  to  those  around  him, 
and  it  may  be  said  of  him  that  he  was  '  sans  peur  et  sans 
reproche.' " 

The  man  with  such  an  epitaph  was  indeed 
worthy  to  be  the  father  of  the  subject  of  this 
memoir.  Of  all  the  letters  which  his  son  John 
wrote  to  him,  only  those  from  1880  to  1887  have 
been  preserved,  and  even  of  those  many  are 
missing ;  notably  all  those  that  followed  on  the 
death  of  Lieut.-Colonel  John  Haughton's  first  wife, 
and  all  those  written  during  the  Delhi  camp  of 
exercise  of  1885-86.  The  tone  of  the  son's  letters 
indicate  that  the  most  perfect  confidence  and 
strongest   affection    existed    between    him    and    his 


RICHARD   HAUGHTON.  57 

father.  I  shall  have  more  to  say,  later  on,  about 
these  letters,  as  an  index  to  John  Haughton's 
character  and  capacities.  For  the  present  I  will 
only  remark  that,  in  my  opinion,  the  father  who 
received  such  letters  from  his  son  is  to  be  con- 
gratulated. 

General  Haughton  had  two  sons  besides  John. 
Richard,  the  elder,  was  born  at  Chyebassa,  near 
Chhota  Nagpur,  in  India,  on  May  7,  1848.  He  was 
educated  at  Uppingham  School,  under  the  Rev. 
Edward  Thring,  and  at  Christ's  College,  Cambridge, 
where  he  took  his  M.A.  degree.  After  studying 
medicine  for  a  year  or  so  he  gave  up  a  pursuit  which 
he  found  distasteful,  and  joining  his  father  in  Bengal 
in  1870,  received  an  assistant-commissionership  at 
Jalpaiguri.  Finding  that  the  sedentary  employment 
of  the  uncovenanted  civil  service  did  not  suit  him, 
and,  preferring  a  planter's  life,  he  accepted  an 
appointment  on  a  tea  plantation  in  the  Darjeeling 
Terai.  While  there,  an  epidemic  of  cholera  broke 
out.  Of  his  conduct  at  that  time  his  old  friend, 
Mr.  C.  Brownfield,  thus  writes :  "  He  stood  un- 
daunted with  Archie  Campbell,  a  brother  planter, 
when  cholera  raged  in  the  tea-gardens,  attending  to 
the  stricken,  the  dying,  and  the  dead.  The  two 
young  planters  had  themselves  to  carry  the  dead 
and  bury  them."  The  staunchness  of  those  two 
men  prevented  the  entire  exodus  of  the  coolies,  and 
thus  enabled  the  work  to  be  carried  on.  In  1873  he 
was  invited  to  undertake  the  management  of  one  or 
two  tea-gardens,  but,  declining  those  offers,  accepted 


5^  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

that  of  a  Dr.  Brougham  to  open  up  a  tea-garden  in 
the  Western  Dooars  or  Bhutan  Terai.  What  this 
district  was  in  1874,  I  can  best  describe  in  Mr. 
Brownfield's  own  words — 

"  It  was  a  wilderness  of  unhealthy  jungle,  a  dense 
growth  of  vegetation  fighting  fiercely  for  the  light,  vigorous 
saplings  pushing  through  the  leafless  branches  of  giant 
trees  that  had  been  dead  for  years,  and  were  kept  from 
falling  by  the  creeper  cables,  which,  when  in  their  tender 
years,  clung  to  the  trees  for  support.  A  land  of  prostrating 
fevers,  humid  and  miasmatic  :  a  luxuriance  of  foliage  above, 
decayed  and  decaying  wood  and  leaves  below,  a  land 
demanding  nearly  a  man's  whole  energies  merely  to  exist." 

Such  was  the  country  and  climate  in  which 
Richard  Haughton  became  the  pioneer  of  a  tea- 
industry  which  to-day  employs  thousands  of  human 
beings.  He  was  the  first  man  to  start  a  tea-garden 
there.  In  four  months  he  succeeded  in  clearing  and 
planting  seventy  acres.  He  also  managed,  before 
the  rains  set  in,  to  build  a  small  two-roomed,  earth- 
floored,  mat-walled  hut;  and  thither,  in  1874,  he 
brought  his  wife,  the  eldest  daughter  of  Captain 
D.  K.  Presgrave,  and  his  own  first  cousin.  For 
twenty-one  years  Richard  Haughton  lived  and 
worked  in  the  Western  Dooars,  opening  up,  in  all, 
five  tea-gardens  for  Dr.  Brougham  and  two  for 
other  employers.  He  had,  unfortunately,  bound 
himself  by  a  promise  to  Dr.  Brougham  not  to  open 
up  tea-gardens  on  his  own  account.  In  return  for 
such  an  undertaking  he,  not  unnaturally,  expected 
that  in  due  course  his  employer  would  take  him 


A    PIONEER    OF    TEA-PLANTING.  59 

into  partnership.  This,  however,  did  not  come  to 
pass ;  and,  moreover,  during  all  those  twenty-one 
years  he  received  only  eight  months'  leave.  John 
Haughton's  letters  from  1880  to  1890  show  the 
anxiety  that  he  felt  for  his  brother  Richard's  health, 
doomed  as  he  was  to  pass  the  best  years  of  his  life 
in  a  hotbed  of  malaria.  In  1889  an  epidemic  of 
cholera  broke  out  at  Soongachi,  where  one  of  his 
tea-plantations  lay.  After  attending  the  deathbed 
of  a  brother  planter,  and  helping  the  doctor  to 
render  the  last  offices,  he  was  himself  seized  with 
the  complaint.  Fifteen  years*  familiarity  with  the 
fell  disease  had  tauo^ht  him  the  best  remedies.  He 
applied  them  promptly  and  recovered.  In  1895  his 
health  completely  broke  down,  and  he  came  home 
on  three  months'  leave,  grudgingly  granted  as  it 
would  seem.  For  the  last  six  years  he  had  been  an 
honorary  magistrate  of  the  district,  and  he  was  the 
founder  and,  while  he  lived,  the  honorary  secretary 
of  the  Dooars  Planters'  Association.  He  died  in 
London  on  May  29,  1895,  at  the  age  of  forty-seven, 
and  is  buried,  with  two  of  his  children,  in  Hammer- 
smith Cemetery. 

Of  the  esteem  in  which  he  was  held  by  those 
who  knew  him  best,  I  have  numerous  evidences 
before  me.  I  can  but  select  one  or  two.  One 
writer  says — 

"All  planters  will  feel  the  loss  of  a  most  sincere  friend, 
and  the  district  of  a  man  impossible  to  replace,  as  very 
few  will  exert  themselves  as  he  did  for  the  good  of  the 
community,   and   with    the   truest   and    most   unselfish   of 


6o  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

motives.  He  always  kept  open  house,  dispensing  hospitality 
with  a  free  hand.  What  Richard  Haughton  found  a  jungle 
waste  now  contains  eighty-one  gardens  and  43,600  acres 
under  tea,  with  the  finest  appointed  bungalows,  factories, 
and  machinery  of  any  tea  district  ;  and  last,  not  least,  the 
prosperous  Bengal  Dooars  Railway." 

Another  says — 

"  His  tact,  zeal,  and  energy  were  crowned  with  success, 
for  the  best  things  we  have  achieved  here  were  due  either 
to  his  initiative  or  were  carried  through  mainly  by  his 
indomitable  pluck  and  perseverance." 

The  Dooars  Planters'  Association  put  his  portrait 
in  their  club,  and  a  brass  tablet  to  his  memory  in 
their  church  ;  and  to  his  vi^idow,  v^^ho  had  shared  his 
twenty-one  years  of  toil,  they  gave  a  still  more 
practical  testimonial  of  their  high  regard,  accom- 
panied by  a  *'  resolution  "  expressing  their  sincere 
sympathy  with  her  in  her  bereavement.  The  in- 
scription on  the  tablet  is  this — 

"  Erected  to  the  memory  of  the  late  Richard  Haughton 
of  Soongachi  Tea  Estate,  Jalpaiguri  district,  who  died  in 
London,  May  29,  1895,  by  his  planter-friends  and  others, 
in  recognition  of  the  valuable  services  he  rendered  for 
many  years  to  the  tea  industry  as  honorary  secretary  of 
the  Dooars  Planters'  Association,  and  as  a  mark  of  the 
high  esteem  in  which  he  was  held  by  all  who  knew  him." 

Henry  Lawrence,  the  youngest  son  of  General 
J.  C.  Haughton,  was  born  at  Tavoy  on  October  i, 
1857.  He  was  educated  at  Winchester  and  Cam- 
bridge.    Having  passed  his  "  Little  Go,"  he  entered 


HENRY   LAWRENCE   HAUGHTON.  6 1 

the  Army  in  1878,  being  posted  to  the  29th  (Wor- 
cestershire) Regiment.  He  volunteered  for  duty 
as  a  Transport-officer  in  the  Afghan  campaign,  and 
as  such  served  from  October  21,  1879,  to  May  31, 
1 88 1.  He  accompanied  the  force,  under  Major- 
General  Robert  Phayre,  in  its  advance  to  the  relief 
of  Kandahar  as  a  Brigade  Transport-officer.  When 
the  British  troops  were  withdrawn  from  Kandahar 
in  April,  1881,  Henry  Haughton  returned  to  India. 


62  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 


CHAPTER   III. 

JOHN    HAUGHTOn's    EARLY    DAYS. 

"  Of  soldier  sire,  the  soldier  son — 
Life's  honoured  eventide 
One  lives  to  close  in  England,  one 
In  maiden  battle  died." 

Archbishop  Trench. 

John  Haughton  was  born  on  August  22,  1852,  at 
Chhota  Nagpur. 

General  J.  C.  Haughton  gave  his  children  one 
name  only,  except  the  youngest,  who,  being  born  late 
in  1857,  was  called  Henry  Lawrence,  after  the  hero 
of  Lucknow.  John,  in  a  letter  written  to  his  father 
in  June,  1881,  thus  comments  on  his  own  name, 
evidently  in  reply  to  some  remark  of  his  father's — 

"  John  or  Jack  is  all  the  same  to  me.  My  relations 
may  take  their  choice,  but  I  fear  they  will  not  find  John  a 
more  valuable  article  than  Jack  was.  As  long  as  they  love 
'  John '  none  the  less  than  they  did  '  Jack,'  he  will  be 
quite  content.  I  am  not  at  all  sorry  you  did  not  give  me 
a  second  name.  I  would  not  wish  for  a  better  than  the 
one  I  have  got,  and  never  have  felt  any  need  for  a  second." 

To  his  relations  and  best  friends  he  was  "  Jack  " 
to  the  end  of  his  life. 


SCHOOL   DAYS.  63 

Of  his  childish  days  there  is  very  httle  to  record. 
He,  Hke  his  other  brothers  and  his  sister,  was  sent 
home  to  his  grandfather  (erst  professor  at  Addis - 
combe)  and  grandmother  at  Ramsgate ;  and  was 
brought  up  by  them,  as  long  as  they  lived,  and,  after 
their  death,  by  General  J.  C.  Haughton's  sisters. 
The  only  living  person  who  remembers  him  in 
childhood  is  his  aunt,  Miss  Haughton,  whose  special 
charge  her  brother's  children  were.  From  what  she 
has  written  it  is  evident  that  he  was,  as  a  child,  what 
he  was  as  a  man — kind-hearted  and  tractable,  and 
at  the  same  time  resolute  and  independent.  The 
sands  at  Ramsgate  were  his  favourite  playground, 
and  there  he  formed  friendships  with  the  sailors  and 
fishermen.  One  very  old  man  was  his  special 
favourite,  and  his  big  shrimping-net  "  Jack  "  might,  on 
occasions,  be  seen  helping  to  carry  home  through 
the  crowded  streets  of  Ramsgate.  However,  enough 
of  childhood's  anecdotes.  They  are  at  best,  as  a 
rule,  but  childish.  His  first  school  was  one  kept 
by  Miss  Wilkes  at  Canterbury.  He  was  even  then 
growing  very  rapidly.  Later  he  went  to  a  school  at 
Ramsgate  kept  by  the  Rev.  A.  Manson.  In  August. 
1865,  when  in  his  thirteenth  year,  he  was  sent  to 
Uppingham,  then  under  the  able  headmastership  of 
the  Rev.  Edward  Thring.  His  brother  Richard, 
and  two  cousins  of  the  name  of  Rhode,  were  also  at 
Uppingham,  which  was  then,  as  now,  a  school  of 
high  repute.  Among  his  contemporaries  there  were 
the  Rev.  Canon  Skrine,  Warden  of  Glenalmond,  Mr. 
Maurice    Macmillan,    ]\Ir.    Edward    Stanford,    and 


64  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Colonel  J.  II.  Rosseter,  R.A.     Among  the  masters 
of  the  school  who  knew  him  were  the  Reverends 
G.  H.  Mullins,  H.  Candler,  and  E.  C.   Selwyn,  the 
last-mentioned  being  now  the  Headmaster.     I  am 
indebted  to  them  and  to  Mr.  Robert  Rhode  for  the 
little  which  I  have  been  able  to  learn  of  his  school- 
days.    His  unusual  stature  was  the  point  that  im- 
pressed  itself  on  all    memories.     He  was  popular 
with  and  respected  by  his  schoolfellows.     He  was 
not  remarkable   in  any  branch   of  athletics — rapid- 
growing  boys  very  seldom  are, — and  that  he  was 
not   a   great    scholar   is    shown    by   the    fact    that 
when  he  left  the  school  in  October,   1868,  he  was 
still  only  in   the  lower  fourth.     However,    he  was 
educated  to  go    into  the    Army,   and    the  sterling 
qualities  which  he  possessed  showed  themselves  in 
the  determined   way   in  which  he  worked  for  and 
gained  that  end.     On  leaving  Uppingham  he  was 
sent  to  a  then  well-known  "  crammer,"  Dr.  Stacpoole 
of  Kingstown   near   Dublin.     When    he  expressed 
his  intention  of  going  up  for  the  next  examination 
for  entrance  into  Sandhurst,  his  tutor  assured  him 
that  he   had    not   the   ghost    of   a    chance.      Jack 
Haughton,    however,  thought   otherwise,    went   up 
for   the   examination,  and    passed,  "taking  exactly 
a  middle  place  among  the  hundred  successful  candi- 
dates."     This    happened    late   in   1868  or  early  in 
1869,  when  he  was  still  well  under  seventeen  years 
of  age.      After   he   left  Uppingham    he   was   evi- 
dently lost  sight   of  by   his  school,   until   in   1897 
his    name   came   prominently    forward    during    the 


SCHOOL    MEMORIAL    TO    HIM.  65 

severe  fighting  in  Tirah.  Occasionally,  if  he  chanced 
to  be  in  England,  he  would  attend  one  of  the 
Old  Boys'  School  Dinners  in  London.  His  old 
form-master,  Mr,  Candler,  in  the  "In  Memoriam" 
paper  which  appeared  in  the  June,  1898,  number  of 
the  Uppingham  School  Magazine,  gives  these  brief 
reminiscences  of  him  : — 

"  He  was  (as  a  schoolboy)  quiet,  gentlemanly,  and  of 
good  report,  and  a  very  pleasant  fellow  to  deal  with.  .  . 
I  never  met  my  old  pupil  after  he  left  school,  till  a  few 
years  ago  at  an  Old  Boys'  School  Dinner  in  London,  when 
he  made  himself  known  to  me.  He  was  the  tallest  of  the 
tall,  and  proportionately  well-built,  looking  every  inch  a 
gallant  gentleman.  His  mobile  face  was  full  of  intelligence 
and  kindness,  and  it  was  veiy  pleasant  to  see  him  smile. 
He  looked  strong  and  valiant,  a  man  to  be  depended  on 
and  trusted." 

How  proud  his  school  and  schoolfellows  were 
of  the  distinction  he  won  in  Tirah  as  an  able  and 
brave  soldier,  and  of  his  gallantry  in  death,  I  have 
evidence  in  letters  before  me  from  masters  and 
boys.  A  movement  had  already,  early  in  1898,  been 
started  among  his  old  schoolfellows  in  the  Services 
to  put  up  a  memorial  to  him  at  Uppingham,  when  it 
became  known  that  his  brother  officers  in  the  35th 
and  36th  Sikhs  proposed  to  do  so.  The  honour 
was  ceded  to  them,  and  in  1899  the  brass,  repro- 
duced in  the  accompanying  illustration,*  was  placed 
in  the  school  chapel. 

Of  the  eighteen  months  which  Haughton  spent 

*  Taken  from  a  photograph  by  Mr.  Stocks  of  Uppingham. 


66  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

at  Sandhurst,  and  of  the  first  ten  years  of  his  service, 
scarcely  any  record  is  extant,  except  a  very  brief 
memorandum  in  his  own  handwriting,  written 
apparently  in  1894.  I  can  do  no  better  than  quote 
that. 

"  From  the  middle  of  1869  until  December,  1870,  I  was 
at  the  Royal  Military  College,  Sandhurst.  From  December, 
1870,  to  October,  1871,  I  was  (with  many  others)  kept 
waiting  for  my  commission,  as  the  Bill  for  the  abolition 
of  purchase  was  being  considered  in  Parliament.  I  was 
gazetted  an  ensign  In  the  ist  Battalion  24th  Foot  (now 
called  South  Wales  Borderers)  on  October  28,  187 1.  I  did 
not  purchase  my  commission,  although  '  purchase '  was  not 
done  away  with  till  a  few  days  afterwards.  I  was  one  of 
the  last  ensigns  ever  gazetted  to  the  army.  The  rank  of 
ensign  was  abolished,  if  I  remember  rightly,  from  Novem- 
ber I,  1871. 

"As  usual,  I  did  not  join  the  regiment  for  two  months. 
On  January  6,  1872,  I  sailed  from  Liverpool.  There  were 
on  board  two  other  subalterns,  Browne  and  Curteis,  to  join 
the  24th  Regiment.  They  had  both  been  at  Sandhurst  at 
the  same  time  as  myself.  Browne  gained  the  V.C.  in  the 
Zulu  War,  and  now  commands  the  2nd  Battalion  South 
Wales  Borderers.  We  landed  at  Malta  about  January 
16,  and  were  there  until  some  time  in  March,  when 
the  regiment  proceeded  in  H.M.'s  troopship  Jumna  to 
Gibraltar.  Gibraltar  was  an  expensive  place.  My 
father  applied  for  me  to  be  transferred  to  a  regiment  in 
India.  I  was  gazetted  to  the  72nd  Highlanders.  I  left 
Gibraltar  and  the  dear  old  24th  in  February,  1874, 
travelling  by  P.  and  O.  steamer  to  Bombay.  In  those 
days  it  took  a  long  time  to  get  through  the  Canal,  so  we 
did    as    was    customary,    i.e.    left    the  ship    (the   ill-fated 


WITH   24TH  AND    72 ND   REGIMENTS.  67 

Bokliard)  *  at  Alexandria,  and  went  by  train  to  Suez,  where 
we  embarked  on  the  P.  and  O.  Pekin.  I  may  mention 
that  while  on  board  the  Bokhara  we  experienced  a  great 
gale  in  the  Mediterranean.  The  ship  was  overloaded  with 
iron  rails  and  other  cargo.  The  water  was  several  inches 
deep  in  the  cabins  and  saloons.  We  were  two  days  late 
in  the  short  voyage  from  Malta  to  Alexandria.  In  due 
course  I  arrived  at  Bombay,  and  proceeded  to  Peshawur, 
where  the  72nd  Highlanders  were  quartered.  I  found 
them  a  very  fine  regiment  indeed,  and  have  never  seen  a 
finer.  The  officers,  too,  were  pleasant  and  kindly,  although 
contrary  to  advice,  I  let  it  be  known  from  the  first  that  my 
final  destination  must  be  the  Staff  Corps. 

"At  Peshawur  we  were  stationed  until  the  following 
cold  weather,  when  (about  February,  1875,  I  think)  we 
moved  to  Nowshcra.  About  May  I  marched  with  my 
company  to  Attock  Fort,  and  we  were  there  till  October. 
I  was  then  sent  to  join  Regimental  Headquarters  at  Cherat, 
where  they  had  been  during  the  hot  weather.  By-the-by 
when  I  went  to  Peshawur,  there  was  no  railway  beyond 
Lahore,  from  which  place  we  went  by  dak-gari.\ 

"From  Cherat  I  accompanied  the  Headquarters  and 
right  wing  to  Sialkot.  On  April  15,  1876,  I  got  six 
months'  leave,  and  went  right  down  country  to  stay  with 
my  brother  Dick,  who  was  a  tea-planter  at  a  garden 
about  twenty  miles  from  Jalpaiguri  in  north-east  Bengal. 
The  garden  was  in  what  is  called  the  Western  Bhutan 
Dooars.  Whilst  on  leave  an  order  came  out  that  officers 
from  British  regiments  could  be  appointed  to  the  Staff 
Corps,  when  they  had  completed  one  year's  service  in 
India,  and  had  passed  the  lower  standard  examination  in 
Hindustani.     (Previously  the  qualification  was  '  two  years' 

*  She  went   down    in  a   storm  in  the  Straits  of  Formosa  some 
sixteen  years  later. 

t  An  Indian  method  of  posting. 


68  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

service  in  India,  and  to  have  passed  the  higher  standard 
examination  in  Hindustani.')  Consequently  I  applied  to 
be  appointed  to  the  lOth  Bengal  Native  Infantry,  which 
was  then  stationed  at  Jalpaiguri.  My  reasons  for  doing 
so  were  first  to  be  near  my  brother,  second  to  escape  the 
expense  of  the  journey  back  to  Sialkot  right  across  India, 
and  thirdly  on  account  of  the  good  sJiikai'  at  Jalpaiguri. 
I  was  posted  to  the  loth  Bengal  Native  Infantry  on 
November  lo,  1876  ;  but  was  at  once  sent  off  to  Dacca, 
where  there  were  four  companies  of  the  regiment.  The 
usual  way  to  go  to  Dacca  from  Jalpaiguri,  in  those  days, 
was  by  pony  or  elephant  to  Titalia  (27  miles),  then  by  dak- 
gari  to  Sahibganj  (100  miles),  cross  the  River  Ganges  in  a 
steamer,  and  then  by  train  to  Calcutta  (about  250  miles). 
However,  having  been  very  '  seedy '  with  jungle  fever,  I 
thought  I  would  like  a  quieter  journey,  so  hired  a  country 
boat — and  comfortable  enough  it  was — which,  for  some 
sixty  rupees,  agreed  to  take  me  to  Dacca.  At  that 
season  (October)  the  country  is  a  network  of  waterways. 
It  only  took  about  eight  days  to  get  to  Dacca,  where  I  was 
stationed  till  the  following  June.  I  then  went  to  Calcutta 
to  study  Hindustani,  and  passed  the  higher  standard  ex- 
amination at  the  beginning  of  September,  1877.  From 
Calcutta  I  volunteered  for  service  in  the  Madras  famine.* 

*  Unfortunately  no  detailed  account  is  forthcoming  of  Haughton's 
work  and  experiences  in  this  famine,  one  of  the  most  severe  that 
India  has  known.  Not  a  single  letter  to  his  father  of  that  period  is  in 
existence.  All  that  we  know  is  that  both  for  the  services  he  rendered 
and  for  the  report  he  sent  in,  he  received  the  thanks  and  commenda- 
tion of  the  Government  of  India.  His  "Record  of  Service"  con- 
tains the  brief  entry,  "  Employed  in  Famine  Relief  Duty  in  Madras 
from  2i.9.'77  to  10.4. '78,  and  received  the  special  thanks  of  the 
Government  of  India.  G.O.C.C,  2i.8.'78,  p.  427."  Among  those 
thanked  in  the  same  resolution  (No.  1385,  in  the  P.W.D.  of  26.7.'78) 
is  Lieutenant  C.  H.  Des  Voeux,  the  officer  who  afterwards,  as 
Haughton's  second  in  command,  so  ably  supported  him  in  the  defence 
of  the  Samana  Forts,  and  in  all  the  hard  work  and  fighting  of  the 
Tirali  expedition,  and  who  succeeded  him  in  the  command  of  the 
36th  Sikhs. 


MADRAS   FAMINE.  69 

"I  went  by  sea  to  Madras  in  September,  1877,  and 
was  appointed  to  the  Nellore  district.  I  remained  there  till 
the  following  May  (1878),  and  then  went  back  and  joined 
Headquarters  of  the  lOth  Bengal  Native  Infantry  at 
Jalpaiguri.  There  we  remained  until  the  following 
October,  when,  in  consequence  of  the  Afghan  War  breaking 
out,  we  were  suddenly  ordered  down  to  Alipore,  a  suburb 
of  Calcutta.  Since  my  first  going  to  Jalpaiguri  the 
railway  there  had  been  made.  We  remained  at  Alipore 
only  a  month  or  six  weeks,  and  then  were  sent  to  Barrack- 
pore,  which  is  about  twelve  or  fifteen  miles  from  Calcutta. 
We  remained  there  until  about  February,  1880,  when  we 
were  suddenly  ordered  up  to  Cachar  on  account  of  the 
Naga  War.  We  went  by  river-steamer  to  Calcutta,  and 
then  by  country  boats  for  two  days." 

It  is  from  this  date  that  commence  the  letters 
from  Haughton  to  his  father  which  have  been  pre- 
served, and  which  continue  to  the  time  of  his  father's 
death  in  September,  1887.  These  letters  are  in 
themselves  evidence  of  the  entire  sympathy  that 
existed  between  the  father  and  the  son.  When 
we  consider  that  John  Haughton  was  sent  home 
when  little  more  than  an  infant,  and  that  "  he 
never  saw  his  father  after  he  was  fifteen,"  *  we 
can  only  wonder  that  the  tie  which  bound  them 
together  was  so  strong.  It  speaks  volumes  for  the 
manner  in  which  the  boy  was  brought  up  by  his 
father's    sisters,    and    for    the    keen    interest    and 

*  Letter  from  Mrs.  J.  C.  Haughton,  dated  September  5,  1S99. 
When  General  Haughton  came  home,  in  1873,  ^''•s  son  John  was  at 
Gibraltar,  whence  in  July,  1874,  he  went  to  India,  and  never  returned 
to  England  till  the  spring  of  1888,  after  an  absence  of  more  than 
sixteen  years. 


70  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

sympathetic  temperament  which  empowered  the 
father  to  exercise,  through  years  of  separation,  an 
influence  over  his  children,  and  to  maintain  a  firm 
hold  on  their  affection,  regard,  and  trust.  John 
Haughton  wrote  to  him  without  reserve  on  all 
subjects — on  his  own  interests  and  progress  in  the 
Service,  on  all  that  concerned  his  brothers  Dick  and 
Harry,  on  his  own  views  about  matters  military, 
social,  and  political,  on  his  pleasures  and  anxieties, 
on  his  joys  and  griefs,  on  the  serious  and  humorous 
sides  of  life ;  and,  throughout  all  he  wrote  ran  a 
keynote  of  modesty  about  himself,  kindliness 
towards  others,  keen  interest  in  his  relations  and 
friends,  and  strong  affection  for  and  confidence  in 
his  father. 

The  earliest  letter  of  his  that  I  have  seen,  dated 
February  25,  1880,  gives  a  good  picture  of  the 
conditions  of  service  in  India. 

"That  very  night  (Wednesday)  a  telegram  came  that 
we  were  to  leave  Barrackpore  on  Friday  morning  and 
embark  at  Kidderpore  on  board  the  s.s.  Sir  William  Peel. 
What  with  the  amount  of  returns  that  have  to  be  sent  in 
on  such  occasions,  and  what  with  the  sudden  mortality 
among  the  grandmothers  of  our  servants,  which  necessitated 
their  immediate  return  to  their  homes,  we  had  a  pretty 
Hvely  time  of  it  on  Thursday  ;  but,  once  started  and  safe 
on  the  river,  where  brigade-majors  and  other  natural  foes 
could  not  get  at  us,  we  commenced  a  time  of  great  arain* 
We  started  at  daylight  on  Saturday  morning  and  got  as 
far  as  Diamond  Harbour,  where  the  engines  broke  down. 

*  Peace. 


LETTERS    TO   HIS    FATHER.  J I 

By  next  morning  the  engines  were  patched  up,  and  off  we 
started.  We  can  only  go  in  the  steamer  as  far  as  Bala- 
ganj,  four  days  further  on  ;  and  whether  we  go  on  in 
country  boats  or  march,  no  one  seems  to  know.  In  fact, 
for  all  that  the  Calcutta  authorities  seemed  to  know  about 
it,  Cachar  might  be  in  the  Arctic  Regions. 

"  February  27. — Our  engines  again  broke  down. 

''Cachar,  March  21,  1880. — We  have  not  had  a  very 
inspiriting  time  of  it  here.  We  were  five  days  in  cholera 
camp,  and  then  moved  into  the  station.  Half  our  men  are 
in  tents  and  are  not  to  be  envied.  It  has  rained  copiously 
every  day  we  have  been  here,  and  for  the  last  thirty-six 
hours  it  has  poured.  We  officers  were  at  first  worse  off 
than  the  men,  as  the  only  bungalow  we  could  get  into  had 
had  the  thatch  removed.  Luckily  for  us,  after  four  days 
under  umbrellas  and  waterproof  sheets,  we  got  permission 
to  occupy  another,  and  that  a  waterproof  bungalow.  Much 
was  our  disgust  on  hearing  that  we  had  not  come  up  here 
for  active  service,  but  to  'restore  confidence.'  No  one 
here  ever  seems  to  have  lost  confidence.  The  colonel 
of  the  34th  Bengal  Native  Infantry  has  lost  five  horses  in 
the  last  year ;  so  we  are  sending  our  horses  to  Sylhet 
in  the  hopes  that  they  may  escape  the  Manipuri  disease. 

''March  23,  1880. — The  river  has  risen  twenty-three 
feet  in  two  days.  The  tea-planters,  after  the  manner  of 
the  British  farmer,  are  grumbling  that  they  are  drowned. 
A  fortnight  ago  they  grumbled  that  they  were  dried  up. 
It  is  delightfully  cool,  but  I  rather  think  the  planters 
grumble  at  that.  I  am  very  well  but  for  the  most  abomin- 
able toothache.  Our  doctor  volunteered  to  pull  out  the 
tooth,  but  after  three  attempts,  each  of  which  seemed 
nearly  to  split  my  head,  he  only  succeeded  in  breaking  a 
good  bit  off.     Luckily  it  does  not  ache  much  since. 

"  March  26. — Have  got  a  holiday,  and  am  off  for  three 
days'  shikar." 


72  JOHN  IIAUGHTON. 

These  casual  comments  indicate  a  few  of  the 
amenities  of  Indian  service,  and  of  the  character 
and  ways  of  thought  and  act  of  the  man  who  wrote 
them.  We  must  not,  however,  follow  him  further 
through  what  are,  after  all,  the  mere  everyday 
details  of  an  Indian  soldier's  life.  These  indicate 
to  some  extent  why  service  in  India,  especially 
in  native  regiments,  is  such  an  admirable  school  of 
training  for  the  British  officer.  Our  army  owes 
more  to  it  than  it  does  to  the  so-called  reforms,  a  la 
Prussienne,  introduced  in  1 871,  or  to  all  the  tests  that 
the  ingenuity  of  an  era  of  examinations  has  been 
able  to  invent.  The  best  criticism  on  the  system 
of  theoretical  military  education,  which  has  been  in 
vogue  for  the  last  twenty-eight  years,  is  to  be  found 
in  the  experiences  of  the  Frontier  Warfare  of  1897, 
and  of  the  South  African  Campaign  of  1 899-1900. 

On  the  return  of  the  loth  Bengal  Native 
Infantry  to  Calcutta  in  April,  1880,  Haughton  tells 
his  father  to  look  out  for  his  home-coming  in 
February,  1884,  and  speaks  of  entertaining  "  faint 
visions  of  the  Staff  College."  The  "  faint  vision  " 
faded  into  nothing;  nor  need  we  regret  it.  The 
theoretical  instruction  of  our  "  hothouse  for  staff 
officers "  would  have  added  little  to  the  splendid 
natural  qualities  evinced  by  him  in  Tirah.  A  dis- 
tinguished general  officer,  who  accompanied  the 
Tirah  expedition,  writing  of  Haughton  a  few  weeks 
after  he  was  killed,  spoke  of  him  as  "  his  only  hero," 
and  "  the  finest  leader  of  men  "  he  had  ever  seen. 
"  Hero"  nascitiir,  iion Jit. 


PAUCITY    OF    OFFICERS.  73 

In  May,  1880,  Haughton  got  away  for  three 
months'  shooting  in  the  Terai  and  Himalayas, 
where  he  ultimately  joined  his  brother  officer. 
Major  C.  H.  Palmer,  of  whom  he  succinctly 
remarks,  "  He  and  I  are  great  confederates.  .  .  . 
We  always  have  been  the  greatest  friends."  The 
end  of  July  he  spent  with  his  brother  Dick  at  his 
tea-plantation  in  the  Western  Dooars,  and  early  in 
August  he  was  back  at  Barrackpore.  He  concludes 
his  letter  of  July  20,  1880,  to  his  father,  with  the 
following  comments,  so  truly  descriptive  of  the 
Indian  service  then  as  now  : — 

"  When  I  rejoin,  I  shall  be  the  only  officer  at  head- 
quarters, except  the  Colonel,  so  shall  have  enough  and  to 
Sparc  of  work.  This  is  the  irregular  system  with  a 
vengeance.  If  they  consider  the  irregular  system  a  good 
one,  they  ought  to  stick  to  it  and  not  supply  us  with 
sufficient  red  tape  to  bind  the  hands  and  feet  of  a  whole 
legion  of  officers.  In  addition  to  my  own  duties  as 
Adjutant  and  Paymaster,  I  shall  be  Quartermaster  and 
Wing  Commander,  which,  in  these  days,  means  a  consider- 
able amount  of  office  work,  and  which  brings  little  or  no 
extra  pay.  To  make  matters  worse,  the  Ordnance  Depart- 
ment have  lately  exercised  their  ingenuity  in  altering  all 
the  old  *  Forms '  and  devising  many  new  ones.  The  long- 
promised  new  'Bengal  Army  Regulations'  have,  at  last, 
come  out,  but  before  they  reached  us  there  were  issued 
many  pages  of  alterations  and  corrections." 

There  are  certain  details  of  our  military  system 
about  which  we  never  can  say  "  The  old  order 
changeth,  yielding  place  to  new."  Pluralism  is 
still  rife,  but  a  pluralism  that  benefits  the  budget, 


74  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

instead  of — as  of  yore — lining  the  pockets  of  the 
favoured  myrmidons  of  monarchs,  ministers,  and 
prelates.*  Departments  are  still  cunning  in  the 
devising  of  new  "  Forms."  Each  new  regulation 
still  becomes  the  parent  of  a  numerous  progeny. 
When  a  volume  of  India  Army  Regulations  comes 
forth  to  the  army,  it  looks  neat  and  trim  in  its  red 
attire  ;  but,  as  year  by  year  it  is  fed  liberally  with 
slips  and  cuttings  from  army  orders  and  circulars, 
the  shapely  figure  grows  bulky  and  unwieldy,  and 
the  diofestion  and  assimilation  of  its  contents  becomes 
an  almost  hopeless  task.  In  this  condition,  a  com- 
bined incubus,  puzzle,  and  nightmare  to  adjutants 
and  staff  officers,  it  remains  for  years,  until,  at  last, 
it  is  "  By  Order"  submitted  to  a  special  process  of 
banting    in  vogue   at   army    headquarters,  restored 

*  "  If  we  take  any  (native)  battalion  in  the  army  list  at  random,  we 
may  find  as  many  as  twelve  or  more  officers  borne  on  its  roll.  Of  these 
we  may  find  two  to  be  on  furlough,  one  on  leave  on  medical  certifi- 
cate, two  on  plague  or  famine  duty,  and  one,  at  least,  on  some 
temporary  employment,  not  seconded  from  his  regiment.  But  at  any 
rate,  we  might  say,  that  leaves  six  officers  for  duty  (?).  Not  necessarily. 
It  is  seldom  that  a  battalion  has  not,  at  least,  one  officer  attending  a 
musketry,  transport,  signalling,  garrison,  or  equitation  class,  and,  in 
addition  to  these,  we  may  find  that  another  officer  has  been  detailed 
for  special  duty  on  reconnaissance,  or  as  an  assistant  to  a  recruiting- 
officer,  or  for  some  one  of  many  other  possible  duties.  One  way  or 
another  it  may  be  confidently  asserted  that,  during  a  considerable 
portion  of  the  year,  many  regiments  have  only  four  officers  present  ; 
but  as  long  as  the  '  Returns '  are  correct  and  up-to-date,  that  is  a 
matter  of  small  concern  to  command  and  district  officers.  Of  these 
four  officers  two  are  probably  attached  youngsters,  who  are  thus 
afforded  opportunities  of  masquerading  as  wing  commanders  before 
they  have  learnt  even  the  minor  details  of  the  quartermaster's  and 
transport  offices.  We  know  of  one  battalion  in  which,  of  ten  officers 
entitled  to  special  Tirah  leave,  not  one  succeeded  in  getting  it,  and 
fifteen  days,  on  a  very  special  occasion,  represented  the  accumulated 
privilege  leave  of  its  officers  in  1899." — Pioneer  Mail,  June  i,  1900. 


THE   INDIAN  STAFF   CORPS.  75 

more  or  less  to  its  pristine  shapeliness,  and  again 
issued  as  "  a  boon  and  a  blessing "  to  a  grateful 
army. 

In  his  letters  at  this  time  John  Haughton  begins 
to  impress  on  his  father  that  to  enter  the  Staff  Corps 
is  the  only  course  advisable  for  his  younger  brother 
Harry,  In  this  conviction  his  mind  never  faltered, 
and  he  persevered  until  he  saw  "  Harry  "  posted  as 
a  probationer  to  his  own  corps,  the  loth  Bengal 
Native  Infantry,  in  1881.  He  was  proud  of  his 
brother,  and  of  the  good  reputation  that  he  had 
brought  back  from  Kandahar  as  a  hard-working 
and  capable  officer.  He  rightly  considered  that  to 
a  man  without  private  means,  the  Staff  Corps  affords 
the  most  assured  livelihood,  although  he  must,  from 
his  own  experience  in  the  24th  and  72nd,  have 
sympathized  with  the  reluctance  that  most  officers 
feel  in  severing  themselves  for  life  from  regimental 
service  with  and  command  of  their  own  fellow- 
countrymen.  The  system  under  which  officers 
for  the  Staff  Corps  are  now  appointed  direct  from 
Sandhurst  obviates  some  of  the  old  difficulties.  It 
has,  however,  always  been  felt  that  a  few  years' 
"licking  into  shape"  in  a  British  regiment  was  a 
very  good  training  for  the  candidate  for  the  Staff 
Corps. 

The  term  "  Indian  Staff  Corps  "  has  had  a  longer 
lease  of  life  than  most  of  the  names  of  corps  and 
departments  in  vogue  during  the  past  half  century. 
This  is  the  more  noteworthy  in  that  its  inception 
was  greeted   with    keen   criticism,  and    it    has    not 


76  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

usually  been  recognized  as  a  really  suitable  title. 
If,  however,  we  consider  the  manner  in  which  this 
great  body  of  from  two  to  three  thousand  officers 
has  been  employed  during  the  past  forty  years,  not 
only  in  regiments  and  on  the  army,  departmental, 
and  civil  staffs,  but  in  every  capacity  whatsoever,  in 
which  Government  required  their  services,  we  must 
allow  that  the  name  is  by  no  means  inappropriate 
or  unhappy.  While  the  numbers  of  our  British 
regiments  have  given  place  to  territorial  titles, 
and  while  the  Army  Service  and  Army  Medical 
Corps  have  several  times  changed  their  name  and 
status,  the  "  Indian  Staff  Corps "  changeth  not, 
except  in  some  slight  modifications  of  the  conditions 
of  service,  promotion,  and  pension.  Although,  on 
its  present  basis,  it  can  claim  a  standing  of  but  forty 
years,  it  is  heir  to  all  the  traditions  of  the  East 
India  Company's  Native  Army  from  the  days  of 
Arcot  and  Plassy  downward.  Though  the  Mutiny 
transferred  the  allegiance  of  this  Army  from  "John 
Company "  to  the  Crown,  and  necessitated  its 
thorough  reconstitution,  nevertheless  the  glorious 
victories  of  the  days  of  Clive,  Eyre,  Coote,  Lawrence, 
Harris,  Baird,  Wellesley,  Ochterlony,  Pollock,  and 
Nott  are  held  to  be  the  heritage  of  the  "  Staff 
Corps"  of  to-day.  Such  soldiers  as  Henry  Law- 
rence, John  Nicholson,  James  Outram,  Herbert 
Edwardes,  John  Jacob,  Henry  Norman,  Harry 
Lumsden,  Henry  Green,  Neville  Chamberlain, 
Donald  Stewart,  Frederick  Roberts,  Herbert 
Macpherson,    Charles     Macgregor,     and     William 


INDIAN    ARMY,    PAST  AND    FUTURE.  77 

Lockhart  are  the  links  that  bind  the  achievements 
of  the  first  half  to  the  close  of  the  nineteenth 
century,  and  interweave  the  laurels  won  in  Afghan- 
istan (1838-42),  the  Panjab,  Persia,  and  the  Mutiny 
with  those  gained  later  in  China,  Abyssinia,  Burma, 
Egypt,  and  Africa  (East,  Central,  and  South),  and 
in  many  a  frontier  foray  and  expedition.  In  the 
century  now  about  to  commence  there  lies  a  future 
before  Her  Majesty's  Indian  Army  greater  than  its 
past,  great  as  that  has  been.  The  loyalty  of  the 
Native  Chiefs  has  in  the  last  few  years  won  for 
them  a  right  to  participate  in  the  honours  of  that 
future.  The  Imperial  Service  troops  of  India  are 
a  recognized  factor  in  Imperial  defence.* 

*  The  Fourth  Brigade  sent  front  India  to  China  in  August  last, 
under  the  command  of  General  Cummins,  was  largely  composed 
of  Imperial  Service  Troops. 


78  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER    IV. 

MARRIAGE   AND    AFTER. 

"  Life  is  mostly  froth  and  bubble  ; 
Two  things  stand  like  stone — 
Kindness  in  another's  trouble, 
Courage  in  your  own." 

A.  Lindsay  Gordon. 

Marriage  Is  bound  to  exercise  a  great  influence 
on  a  man's  life.  It  may  not  materially  alter  his 
character — for  character  is  often  too  firmly  formed 
before  marriage  to  be  altered  after  it — but  it  will 
almost  certainly  affect  his  career.  Into  the  life  of 
an  Indian  soldier  it  brings  many  changes,  and,  unless 
it  be  an  unhappy  marriage,  changes  for  the  better. 
Until  he  marries,  the  officer  of  the  Indian  army 
has,  as  a  rule,  no  home  but  his  regimental  mess  ; 
and,  it  is  needless  to  say,  that  is  for  most  men  no 
home  at  all.  Mess  life  may  suit  some  men,  but  to 
others  it  is  an  irksome  necessity.  Most  officers,  by 
the  time  they  reach  middle  life,  are  thankful  to  have 
homes  of  their  own,  in  which  they  are  their  own 
masters.  No  man  in  a  mess  is  his  own  master. 
Besides — to  still  further  regard  the  matter  from 
a  material  point  of  view — the  comforts  of  life  in 


MARRIED    LIFE    IN   INDIA.  79 

India  are  for  the  benedict  and  not  for  the  bachelor. 
Visions  of  baccalaurean  bungalows  in  bygone  days 
awake  few  pleasing  memories.  Over  the  life  which 
*'  E.  H.  A."  has  so  well  painted,  "  Behind  the 
Bungalow,"  the  presiding  influence  of  a  memsahib 
is  needed  and  appreciated. 

Such,  in  brief,  is  one  of  the  many  exoteric  points 
of  view  of  married  life  in  India.  Of  the  esoteric 
view,  of  the  inner  life,  every  man  must  speak  for 
himself  No  outsider  knows  that  life.  When  it 
is  unveiled,  it  comes  sometimes  as  a  revelation. 
Nothing  surprised  me  more,  when  I  read  the 
memories  of  the  **  Man  of  Blood  and  Iron,"  than 
the  tenderness  and  devotion  of  his  letters  to  his 
wife.  A  soft  core  underlay  the  adamantine  surface. 
Haughton,  too,  could  be  a  man  of  iron,  but  the  outer 
shell  of  strong  nerve  and  firm  will  covered  a  gentle 
nature,  as  his  letters,  which  I  shall  quote  from  time 
to  time,  will  show.  Marriage  ever  involves  cares 
and  responsibilities — in  India  more  perhaps  than 
elsewhere — but  it  brings  compensations  that  far 
outweigh  them. 

A  letter  from  John  Haughton  to  his  father, 
dated  Barrackpore,  February  17,  1881,  commences 
thus — 

"  No  news  from  you  for  some  mails  ;  neither  have  I 
written  ;  my  reason  being  that  I  have  been  in  a  very 
disturbed  state  of  mind,  which  you  will  understand  after 
reading  my  statement,  which  perhaps  will  startle  you  ; 
but  I  think  if  you  knew  all  about  it,  it  would  be  an  agree- 
able surprise.     The  fact  is  I  have  proposed  to  and  for,  and 


8o  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

been  accepted  by  Margarctta,  third  daughter  of  Mr.  E,  B. 
Baker,  Deputy  Inspector-General  of  Police  ;  *  but  the 
marriage  is  not  to  come  off  for  two  years,  a  long,  long 
time." 

From  the  next  two  or  three  pages  of  that  letter 
I  shall  make  no  quotations.  I  consider  that  these 
confidences  are  private — not  suited  for  biographies. 
Suffice  it  to  say  that  all  he  wrote  there  does  honour 
to  the  lady  he  selected  for  his  wife,  and  honour  to 
his  own  head  and  heart ;  and,  after  all,  it  filled 
less  than  a  sheet,  and  concluded  with  the  wise 
words — 

"  Now  I've  told  you  all.  I  know  from  experience  that 
engaged  men  often  are  great  bores,  so  I  won't  bore  you 
any  more  at  present.  I  shall  very  anxiously  await  a  letter 
from  you  after  your  receipt  of  this." 

Passing  from  domestic  to  regimental  affairs,  he 
says — 

"  Our  re-organization  has  commenced  with  a  vengeance, 
for  have  we  not  been  ordered  to  get  a  new  pattern  forage- 
cap, new  badges  of  rank,  and  new  shoulder-cords  }  I  used 
to  wear  crowns  on  my  collar,  now  every  garment  is  to 
have  a  star  over  each  shoulder-cord.  These  excrescences 
on  the  shoulders  are  not  becoming  ;  but  what  are  appear- 
ances when  the  efficiency  of  the  army  is  at  stake  ?  It 
only  costs  each  officer  about  £\o,  which  of  course  is  nothing 
with  so  great  an  object  in  view."  f 

*  A  brother  of  his,  Colonel  Charles  Baker,  V.C,  was  very  well 
known  as  chief  of  the  police  in  Egypt  in  succession  to  Colonel 
Valentine  Baker.  He  had  previously  commanded  Rattray's  Sikhs, 
when  it  was  still  a  police  battalion. 

t  A  few  months   later  Haughton   writes   to   his  father   that   he 


MRS.    KENNEDY.  8 1 

In  March,  1881,  Haughton's  regiment  was  moved 
to  Benares,  and  his  letters  now  first  introduce  us  to 
a  very  remarkable  old  lady,  Mrs.  Kennedy,  who 
then  lived  there.  When  the  Prince  of  Wales  was 
in  India,  in  1876,  he  called  upon  her,  for  he  wished 
to  see  and  pay  a  compliment  to  one  who  had  passed 
in  India  a  life,  in  length  far  beyond  the  ordinary 
span,  and  who  by  her  own  personality  and  by  her 
connections  and  associations  was  a  woman  of  mark. 
Her  activity  and  vitality,  moreover,  at  an  age  verging 
on  a  hundred,  were  such  as  are  rarely  seen.  Her 
husband  had  died  about  1858.  He  had  then  seen 
sixty-two  years'  service  and  was  commanding  a 
division.  The  General  Capsicum  to  whom  Captain 
Bellew's  "  Memoirs  of  a  Griffin  "  introduces  us  at 
Calcutta,  would  seem  to  have  belonged  to  a  similar 
school — a  school  that  died  out  after  the  Mutiny. 
At  the  time  of  her  husband's  death,  Mrs.  Kennedy 
had  been  married  fifty-five  years.  She  lived  for 
twenty-seven  years  after  his  death  ;  she  was  married, 
therefore,  in  1802.  Up  to  1881  she  always  went  to 
church  twice  every  Sunday,  but  in  1882  she  con- 
sented to  go  once  only,  though  she  always  stood 
and  knelt  with  the  rest  of  the  congregation.  She 
was  to  the  last  in  possession  of  every  faculty.  She 
had  evidently  been  an  old  friend  of  General  J.  C. 
Haughton,  for  his  son  John  often  mentions  her  in 
writing  to  his  father,  speaks  of  his  kind  reception 

desires  to  pay  off  all  debts  before  marriage,  and  that  his  total  debts 
amount  to  Rs.  1300,  "  mostly  duo  to  my  military  tailor  for  changes  in 
uniform." 


82  JOHN  JIAUGHTON. 

by  her  on  his  first  visit  to  her  in  March,  1881,  and 
in  July  of  that  year  remarks — 

"  Mrs.  Kennedy  is  as  active  as  ever  still,  though  I  hear 
that  she  admits  that  she  must  be  getting  old,  now  that 
she  has  a  grandson  a  brigadier-general,  whom  she  considers 
*  a  very  hicky  young  fellow.'  "  * 

In  April,  1884,  she  thought  of  undergoing  an 
operation  for  cataract,  but  probably  it  was  not  per- 
formed. This  venerable  and  very  highly  respected 
lady  passed  away  at  the  end  of  October,  1884. 
Haughton  thus  writes  to  his  father  of  the  event  on 
November  4 — 

"  Dear,  kind  old  Mrs.  Kennedy  has  succumbed  to  that 
attack  of  bronchitis.  She  died  on  Saturday  and  was 
buried  on  Sunday,  every  European  and  the  leading  natives, 
headed  by  the  Maharaja  (of  Benares),  attending  her  funeral. 
Almost  the  last  coherent  words  she  spoke  were  some  verses 
from  the  23rd  Psalm." 

The  loss  which  the  army  has  recently  sustained 
in  the  death  of  Field- Marshal  Sir  Donald  Stewart, 
induces  me  to  quote  here  some  of  the  remarks  on 
him  which  I  find  in  Haughton's  letters  to  his  father. 
Those  letters  were  written,  be  it  remembered,  in 
perfect  frankness  and  sincerity.  There  are  circum- 
stances under  which  the  candid  utterances  of  a 
subaltern  may  outweigh  the  calculated  praises  of 
more  prominent  eulogists.  In  one  letter,  written 
towards  the  close  of  1880,  Haughton  discusses  at 
some  length — evidently  in  reply  to  inquiries  made 

*  Brigadier-General  T.  G.  Kennedy,  C.B.,  Commandant  of  the 
Panjab  Frontier  Force. 


S/7^   DONALD   STEWART.  83 

by  his  father — the  conduct  of  the  miHtary  opera- 
tions in  Afghanistan,  and  the  generalship  displayed. 
The  points  about  Sir  Donald  Stewart  that  struck 
him  were  these :  the  quiet  thoroughness,  devoid 
of  all  show,  with  which  he  carried  out  all  his  duties 
as  General-in-Chief  in  Afghanistan  ;  his  determi- 
nation to  be  obeyed  ;  the  high  respect  all  entertained 
for  him  ;  and  the  magnanimity  which  prompted  him 
to  give  Sir  Frederick  Roberts  10,000  of  his  picked 
troops  and  his  best  transport  and  send  him  to  relieve 
Kandahar,  while  he  reserved  for  himself  the  more 
onerous  but  less  showy  task  of  withdrawing  the 
troops  from  Kabul  to  Peshawar. 

To  the  timely  reforms  which  Sir  Donald,  as 
Commander-in-Chief,  sought  to  introduce  into  the 
Army  in  India,  Haughton  in  several  letters  refers 
appreciatively.  In  a  letter  dated  June  26,  1881,  the 
following  passage  occurs  : — 

"The  Army  has  great  faith  in  our  new  Chief,  Sir 
Donald  Stewart,  and,  judging  by  one  or  two  cases  that 
have  occurred,  he  does  not  intend  that  regimental  officers 
and  soldiers  proper  should  be  the  sport  and  plaything  of 
departments  and  clerks,  as  they  have  been  for  years.  The 
way  the  Pay,  Ordnance,  Commissariat,  and  other  Depart- 
ments were  allowed  to  harass  the  regimental  folk  was 
most  vexatious.  We  have  lately  had  two  skirmishes,  one 
with  the  Pay  and  the  other  with  the  Musketry  Depart- 
ments, and,  thanks  to  Sir  Donald,  have  triumphed  in  both. 
Another  good  point  in  Sir  Donald  is  that  he  is,  apparently, 
not  going  to  endorse  the  old  saying  'once  on  the  Staff, 
always  on  the  Staff,'  and  is  sending  men  to  regimental 
duty  on  the  completion  of  their  five  years'  tenure  of  office. 


84  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

So,  please  goodness,  we  shall  be  no  more  bullied  by 
D.A.A.G.'s,  etc.,  who  have  never  done  a  stroke  of  regi- 
mental work  since  they  were  subalterns,  and  then,  as  often 
as  not,  were  given  a  staff  appointment  as  a  sort  of  dowry 
with  their  wives." 

Later  on,  in  1881,  Haugh ton  condemns  the  heed- 
less way  in  which  district  and  other  staff  officers, 
who  receive  regular  weekly  returns  from  corps, 
nevertheless  invariably  telegraph  for  every  detail  or 
statistic  they  may  want,  thereby  greatly  and  need- 
lessly increasing  correspondence.  In  October,  1882, 
he  says — 

"It  appears  to  me  that  all  Government  servants  are 
hampered  from  doing  their  really  important  work  by  the 
amount  of  useless  writing  they  have  to  do.  I  rejoice  to  say 
that  since  Sir  Donald  Stewart  has  been  chief,  the  pruning- 
knife  has  been  at  work,  and  has  considerably  reduced  the 
number  of  returns." 

Haughton's  letters  contain,  not  unnaturally,  a 
number  of  comments  on  the  conduct  of  the  Afghan 
campaign  of  1878-81.  Although  most  of  them 
are  sound  and  true,  I  do  not  see  that  any  good 
purpose  is  served  by  repeating  them  here.  I  will 
make  one  exception,  and  that  because  the  opinion 
expressed  contradicts  the  common  version.  After 
the  battle  of  Mai  wand,  and,  what  was  far  worse, 
the  incapacity  displayed  at  Kandahar,  the  Press  of 
Upper  India  commenced  a  tirade  against  the 
Bombay  Native  Army,  somewhat  analogous  to  the 
"  stupidity  of  the  British  officer  "  cry  raised  by  the 
Times  after  the  Koornspruit  affair.    For  the  moment 


MAIWAND.  85 

the  passion  of  criticism  obscured  judgment.  It 
did  not  trouble  itself  about  facts  or  accurate 
knowledge.  The  writers,  like  many  of  the  war 
correspondents  and  critics  of  to-day,  knew  little 
of  military  history,  either  in  or  out  of  India,  and 
probably  nothing  of  the  history  of  the  army  that 
they  criticized  with  such  confidence.  The  Bombay 
Native  Army  has  a  record  of  which  it  is  justly 
proud.  The  calm  and  unbiassed  testimony  of  a 
Benofal  officer  to  the  s^allant  bearinof  of  the  two 
Bombay  infantry  regiments  at  Maiwand  is  worth 
more  than  the  heated  criticism  of  journalists,  some 
of  whom  got  no  nearer  the  scene  of  action  than 
Kandahar.  The  passage  I  would  quote  occurs  in  a 
letter  dated  towards  the  end  of  188 1.      It  is  this: — 

"  I  had  a  talk  the  other  day  with  a  man  who  had  visited 
the  Maiwand  battlefield.  He  says  that  the  Bombay 
Grenadiers  must  have  fought  grandly,  as  evinced  by  the 
marks  of  slaughter  and  the  empty  cartridges  where  they 
stood  firm  in  their  ranks*  The  66th  were  not  much 
under  fire  (as  the  Grenadiers  and  Jacob's  Rifles  were),  until 
the  fatal  break  when  they  may  have  been  partly  carried 
away  by  the  repulsed  Jacob's  Rifles.f  Bodies  of  the  66th 
stood  nobly  later  on  to  the  last  man." 

*  I  traversed  in  January,  1881,  this  line  of  cartridge-cases  from 
where  Jacob's  Rifles  had  fought  on  the  left  to  the  depression  occupied 
by  the  66th  on  the  right.  All  the  infantry  stood  "  firm  in  their  ranks  " 
for  at  least  four  hours. — A.  C.  Y. 

t  Of  the  seven  British  officers  who  went  into  action  with  Jacob's 
Rifles,  two  were  killed,  one  had  a  leg  taken  off  by  a  round  shot,  and 
three  were  more  or  less  severely  wounded.  All  the  native  officers 
with  the  companies  on  the  extreme  left  of  Burrows'  line  were  killed 
or  wounded.  These  companies  only  fell  back  when  the  battery 
supporting  them  ran  out  of  ammunition  and  was  withdrawn. — A.  C.  Y, 


86  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

In  the  autumn  of  1881  Harry  Haughton  came 
from  his  regiment  (29th  Foot)  at  Mhow,  on  a  visit 
to  his  brother  John  at  Benares,  and  accompanied 
him  to  DarjiHng,  where  Mrs.  Baker  and  her 
daughters  Margaretta  (John's  fiancde)  and  Flora 
were  spending  the  hot  weather.  Before  Harry's 
leave  was  over,  he  had  become  engaged  to  Miss 
Flora  Baker.  This,  at  any  rate,  decided  the  question 
which  John  had  been  so  long  advocating,  viz. 
Harry's  transfer  to  the  Staff  Corps.  The  only 
possible  way  to  matrimony  lay  through  the  Staff 
Corps,  and  that  by  accepting  employ  in  the  Pay, 
Commissariat,  or  Transport  Departments — to  all 
intents  and  purposes  the  life  of  a  civilian,  gilded 
with  extra  pay  and  military  titles.  All  plans  for  the 
future  were,  however,  cut  short  by  Harry's  death  of 
cholera  in  July,  1882,  at  Benares.  John,  who  had 
been  caused  much  anxiety  during  the  past  eighteen 
months  by  the  delicate  health  of  \\\s  fiancde,  had  gone, 
on  July  6,  from  Benares  to  Barrackpore,  on  ten  days' 
leave  to  see  her.  He  was  recalled  to  Benares  a  few 
days  later  by  a  telegram  announcing  his  brother's 
seizure  by  cholera.  In  his  letter,  dated  July  13,  he 
tells  all  to  his  father. 

"  I  trust  my  telegram  to  uncle  Hannyngton  will  have 
broken  to  you  the  sad  news  of  my  dear  brother  Harry's 
death,  and  I  pray  to  God  that  He  may  have  given  you 
strength  and  comfort.  The  poor  boy  died  of  cholera  at 
half-past  eight  on  Sunday  evening,  and  was  buried  in  the 
cemetery  here  next  day.  On  the  previous  Wednesday 
(July  5)  he  returned  from  a  ten  days'  trip  to  Barrackpore, 


DEATH   OF  HENRY  HAUGHTON.  Sj 

and  was  then  apparently  well.  On  Thursday  (6th)  morn- 
ing I  went  away  to  Barrackpore,  and  never  saw  him  again. 
My  dear  comrade  and  friend,  Major  Palmer,  did  all  that  a 
brother  could  have  done  both  for  him  and  me.  From  what 
Major  Palmer  tells  me,  and  from  the  dear  boy's  own 
letters,  it  appears  that  on  Thursday  evening,  when  Major 
Palmer  was  driving  him  up  from  the  library,  he  com- 
plained of  being  very  sick,  and  felt  very  ill  for  about  three 
hours,  with  what  was  supposed  to  be  a  bad  bilious  attack. 
On  Friday  and  Saturday  he  went  about  much  as  usual, 
except  that  he  said  he  did  not  feel  strong  enough  to  play 
tennis.  On  Sunday  (July  9)  he  wrote  that  he  was  better 
though  still  very  weak.  He  was  taken  ill  about  eleven 
o'clock  in  the  day,  and  died  quite  peacefully  at  8.30  in  the 
evening  from  weakness.  Major  Palmer  telegraphed  to  me 
on  Sunday  afternoon.  I  started  by  the  next  train,  which 
left  on  Monday  morning,  but  did  not  hear  the  sad  news 
till  I  reached  Moghal  Serai.  It  grieves  me  most  to  think 
of  you,  dear  father.  In  the  few  months  we  have  been  to- 
gether I  have  learnt  to  love  him  very  dearly,  and  to  know 
what  a  gentle,  loving  disposition  was  his.  I  know  from  his 
own  lips  that  Flora  Baker's  love  not  only  made  his  last 
year  on  earth  a  very  happy  one,  but  made  him  more  fit 
for  the  life  to  come,  and  may  God  bless  her  for  it.  I  hope 
I  have  done  right  in  telegraphing  to  General  Hannyngton. 
I  cannot  write  more  now." 

Harry  Haughton  had  won  the  esteem  and 
regard  of  his  brother  officers  of  the  29th  Foot. 
So  much  so,  that  Colonel  Ruxton  of  that  regiment 
wrote  to  John  Haughton  and  said  that  it  was  the 
wish  of  the  officers  of  the  29th  to  put  up  a  monu- 
ment to  him.  John,  writing  to  his  father  on 
July  23,  says — 


88  JOHN  H AUG H TON. 

"  It  grieves  mc  to  think  we  shall  never  see  dear  Harry 
again,  but  that  is  our  loss.  I  have  kind  friends  here  to 
whom  I  owe  much  gratitude,  most  of  all  to  Major  Palmer. 
I  have  received  many  kind  letters,  especially  one  from 
Major  Watson  of  the  29th,  who  says,  speaking  of  you, 
'  When  you  are  writing  home,  will  you  kindly  express  our 
deep  sympathy  with  him  in  the  loss  he  has  experienced, 
and  let  him  know  how  much  we  valued  and  esteemed  his 
son.'  Words  of  themselves  are  not  of  much  value,  but  the 
sympathy  of  real  friends  is  an  honour  to  the  memory  of 
those  who  are  gone,  and  I  value  it  much," 

Again,  on  December  19,  1882,  John  writes  to 
his  father — 

"  I  have  had  a  letter  from  Colonel  Ruxton  of  the  29th, 
advising  me  of  the  completion  of  the  monument  they  wish 
to  erect  over  our  dear  Harry's  grave.  I  think  it  is  a  well- 
chosen  one — a  plain  marble  cross  on  a  marble  base,  with 
the  inscription, '  Erected  by  his  brother  officers  to  Lieutenant 
Henry  Lawrence  Haughton,  of  the  ist  Battalion  Worcester 
Regiment.     Born  October  i,  1857  ;  died  July  6,  1882.'" 

On  January  18,  1883,  at  3.45  p.m.,  John 
Haughton  was  married  at  St.  Bartholomew's  Church 
at  Barrackpore  to  Margaretta  Louisa  Baker.  By 
the  evening  of  the  24th,  Haughton  and  his  wife  had 
arrived  at  Benares,  and  there  they  remained  until 
the  sad  event  in  October  which  brought  their  brief 
married  Hfe  to  a  close.  In  the  summer  of  1883  we 
find  John  strongly  urging  his  father  and  stepmother 
to  come  out  to  India  the  next  cold  weather,  and  join 
him  and  his  wife  during  the  summer  of  1884  in  a 
trip  to  Kashmir.  Any  such  project  as  this,  how- 
ever, passed  into  oblivion  amid  the  grief  that  ensued 


MARRIAGE.      HIS    WIFE'S   DEATH.  89 

on  the  death  of  his  wife  at  Benares.  His  son 
(christened  Henry  Lawrence,  after  his  youngest 
brother)  was  born  on  November  i.  The  mother 
died  on  November  8.  How  deeply  Haughton  felt 
this  loss,  those  who  knew  him  best,  know  best.  His 
friend  Major  Gunning  Hunter,  of  the  loth  Jats 
(quondam  loth  Bengal  Native  Infantry),  writing  to 
me  in  March,  1899,  says — 

"  There  is  no  doubt  that  his  wife's  death  affected  the 
whole  of  his  after  life  ;  but  he  had  a  wonderful  silent 
self-control.  Directly  she  died,  he  plunged  into  a  study 
of  military  matters.  He  got  books  he  never  thought  of, 
I  am  sure,  before,  and  used  to  work  at  them,  and  argue 
over  them.  The  first  motive  was,  I  think,  to  draw  off  his 
mind  from  his  trouble  ;  and  from  that  he  got  more  and 
more  keen.  Not,  mind,  that  he  was  not  always  keen — only, 
he  never  went  ahead  like  that  before.  It  was  the  Delhi 
camp  of  1885-86  that  brought  Haughton  to  the  front. 
Though  Tirah  was  the  first  (and  last)  active  service  that 
he  saw,  every  one  knows  that  few  men  knew  more  of  active 
service.  He  was  a  man  of  men,  'sans  peur  et  sans  re- 
proche.'  " 

Haugh ton's  little  boy  was  confided  to  the  care  of 
his  maternal  grandmother,  who  came  from  Calcutta 
to  Benares  to  look  after  him,  when  he  was  left 
motherless. 

John  Haughton  had  always  been  a  keen  soldier, 
taking  an  intelligent  interest  in  all  that  concerned 
his  profession.  After  the  loss  of  his  wife,  he  turned 
his  attention  more  closely  to  the  study  of  his  pro- 
fession.    He   also  returned   to  his  chummery  with 


90  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

his  friend  Major  Palmer.  His  letters  to  his 
father  in  1884  are  very  much  occupied  with  the 
infant  "  Henry  Lawrence,"  which  is  but  natural. 
1884  was  also  the  era  of  the  dynamitard  in  England, 
and  elicits  this  comment  from  Haughton — 

"  It  is  intolerable  that  England  should  be  oppressed  by 
a  comparatively  small  body  of  fiends.  If  one  wants  to 
lead  a  quiet  life,  the  only  chance  will  be  to  flee  to  the 
most  uncivilized  region  possible  ;  and  it  seems  a  question 
whether  oppression  by  the  ruling  classes,  as  in  Turkey, 
will  not  soon  be  preferable  to  oppression  by  the  discon- 
tented refuse  of  humanity  in  more  civilized  parts." 

This  view  of  matters  may  not  have  occurred  to 
the  ardent  advocates  of  Armenian  emancipation. 
We  often  fail  to  see  the  beam  in  our  own  eye. 
Recent  assassinations  or  attempted  assassinations 
of  royal  personages  add  point  to  this  remark.  All 
Europe  is  now  "  oppressed  by  a  comparatively  small 
body  of  fiends,"  with  which  modern  law  and  justice 
is  too  feeble  to  cope.  The  humanity  of  to-day  bids 
us  coddle  and  conciliate  the  criminal. 

It  was  about  this  time,  also,  that  the  controversy 
regarding  the  respective  value  of  old  and  young 
soldiers  was  going  on.  In  Haughton's  letter  to  his 
father  of  April  i,  1884,  is  the  following  remark: 
"The  Pioneer  says  of  our  three  Generals,  'One 
likes  to  fight  with  very  young  soldiers,  the  second 
likes  old  soldiers,  the  third  likes  to  fight  his  battles 
without  any  soldiers  at  all.'"''"     Apropos  of  this, 

*  The   three   Generals   are   Viscount  Wolseley,    Lord   (then   Sir 
Frederick)  Roberts,  and  Charles  {alias  "  Chinese  ")  Gordon. 


THE   FLOOD    OF    THE    TIDE.  9 1 

it  is  worthy  of  note  that  Sir  Harry  Lumsden  of 
the  Guides,  who  had  seen  as  much  stern  fighting 
as  most  men,  was  of  opinion  (as  his  biographers 
relate)  that,  if  a  tough  bit  of  work  had  to  be  done, 
young  soldiers  were  the  best  to  do  it.  He  con- 
cluded that  they  in  their  inexperience  knew  not 
danger  or  fear.  On  the  other  hand,  the  term 
"  veteran  troops "  is  one  that  is  synonymous  with 
"troops  fit  for  any  emprise."  In  the  present  war 
with  the  Boers,  our  young  short-service  soldiers, 
well  leavened  with  Reservists,  have  done  splendidly. 
If  the  respective  merits  of  the  young  and  old 
soldier  is  matter  for  controversy,  the  South  African 
War  can  only  decide  that  the  young  ones  are 
worthy  to  tread  in  the  footsteps  of  the  old — and 
they  can  have  no  higher  praise.  For  faults  of 
training  and  organization  the  soldier  is  not 
responsible. 

July  and  August  of  1884  Haughton  spent  at 
Raniket,  where  his  mother-in-law,  sister-in-law,  and 
infant  son  were  spending  the  hot  weather.  This 
year  {1884)  was,  as  I  judge  by  a  careful  perusal 
of  his  letters  to  his  father,  the  turning-point  in  his 
career,  the  flood  of  the  tide,  when  the  wave  of 
destiny,  at  first  threatening  in  its  aspect,  took  him 
up  on  its  crest  and  bore  him  through  thirteen 
years  of  the  storms  and  lulls,  ups  and  downs  of 
service,  during  the  last  months  of  which  he  faced 
danger  and  defied  death  and  defeat,  to  that  final 
hour  when  he  gave  himself  to  save  others,  and  so 
brought  the  bark  of  his  life  gallantly,  with  colours 


92  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

nailed  to  the  mast,  into  the  haven  of  rest.  A  fact, 
full  of  pathos,  has  very  lately  come  to  my  know- 
ledge, and  I  venture,  in  all  sympathy  with  those 
whom  it  most  deeply  affects,  to  mention  it  here. 
One  of  the  Commandants  under  whom  John 
Haughton  served  in  the  loth  Bengal  Native 
Infantry,  was  Colonel  Firth.  Shortly  after  the  sad 
news  of  Haughton's  death  arrived,  he  wrote  to 
Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer,  the  brother  officer  and  most 
intimate  friend  of  both  :  "  The  best  thing  I  could 
wish  for  my  boy  is  that  he  should  follow  Haughton's 
example  and,  if  need  be,  die  like  him."  Colonel 
(now  Major-General)  Firth's  only  son  has  very 
recently  died  at  Bloemfontein,  having  served  honour- 
ably in  "  The  Buffs  "  under  Lord  Roberts  in  all  the 
marching  and  fighting  that  resulted  in  the  relief  of 
Kimberley,  the  surrender  of  Cronje  at  Paardeberg, 
and  the  occupation  of  Bloemfontein. 

It  was  in  1884  that  John  Haughton  became 
personally  known  to  Sir  Herbert  Macpherson,  a 
General  Officer,  whose  reputation  at  that  time  was 
second  only  to  that  of  Sir  Donald  Stewart  and 
Sir  Frederick  Roberts.  It  was  undoubtedly  owing 
to  this  that,  in  November,  1885,  he,  to  his  surprise, 
found  himself  appointed  to  be  a  Brigade- Major  at 
the  Ambala-Delhi  Camp  of  Exercise,  the  most  im- 
portant manoeuvres  ever  held  in  India,  and  which 
were  attended  by  military  officers  deputed  by  the 
chief  Continental  powers  of  Europe,  by  the  United 
States,  and  by  Japan. 

It  will  be  remembered  that  when,  in  April,  1885, 


ENGLAND  AND   RUSSIA    IN  1885.  93 

war  with  Russia  appeared  to  be  imminent,  the 
Government  of  India  was  found  to  be  in  a  most 
unprepared  state  for  war.  It  was  almost  as 
unprepared  as  that  of  Russia.  For  this  the  Empire 
was  indebted  to  the  poHcy  which  had  not  only 
withdrawn  our  troops  in  April,  18S1,  from  Kanda- 
har, but,  what  was  still  worse,  had  suspended  the 
construction  of  the  railway  from  Sibi  to  Ouetta. 
Had  Ouetta  and  the  Kozhak  Pass  been  then  con- 
nected by  rail  with  India,  the  attitude  of  our 
Government  towards  that  of  Russia  over  the 
Panjdeh  affair  ought  to  have  been  very  different 
from  what  it  actually  was.  Whether  the  Amir 
Abdurrahman  really  pronounced  himself  unwilling 
to  go  to  war  for  "that  strip  of  desert "  (Badghis),  or 
whether  he  was  induced  to  adopt  that  opinion, 
matters  little  now.  Suffice  it  that  that  was  the 
view  acted  upon ;  and,  as  a  consequence,  we  have 
now  a  Russian  railway,  Russian  troops,  and  Russian 
siege  artillery  within  seventy  miles  of  Herat ;  while 
the  Russians  entertain  themselves,  and  exercise  the 
Amir,  by  experiments  in  mobilization  on  the  frontier 
conticruous  thereto.  There  is  little  in  connection 
with  the  settlement  of  the  Russo-Afghan  frontier 
from  Zulfikar  to  Khamiab  to  which  we  can  now 
look  back  with  any  feeling  of  satisfaction.  The 
official  policy  of  the  hour  was  a  pusillanimous  one. 
It  had  Afghans  and  Turkomans,  supported  by  five 
hundred  picked  Indian  troops  under  thirty  British 
officers,  on  the  spot,  to  protect  British  and  Afghan 
interests.      It  had  thousands  of  Tekes  ready  to  rise 


94  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

in  revolt  in  rear  of  the  Russians.  All  this  power 
was  neglected.  Tall  talk  and  concession  were  the 
keynotes  of  our  policy.  This  train  of  thought  has 
been  suggested  by  somewhat  similar  reflections 
made  by  Haughton  in  his  letters  at  this  period  to 
his  father.  As  one  who  was  with  the  Afghan 
Boundary  Commission  from  September,  1884,  to 
June,  1885,  I  am  in  full  sympathy  with  his  views. 
Haughton,  writing  a  fortnight  before  the  affair  of 
Panjdeh,  expresses  surprise  that  the  Government 
still  declines  to  push  the  railway  beyond  Sibi.  No 
one  who  now  looks  back  on  the  events  of  that  time 
need  feel  any  surprise.  The  more  intimately  he 
was  associated  with  those  events,  the  more  keenly 
will  he  feel  the  disappointment  of  lost  possibilities. 
In  the  same  letter,  Haughton  writes — 

"Reports  state  that  Lumsden,  with  our  Commission, 
has  gone  into  Persian  territory.  Such  a  proceeding  must 
damage  our  prestige,  if  true.  I  should  imagine,  with  the 
Afghans  on  our  side,  and  having  with  him  four  hundred 
of  the  pick  of  our  native  army  and  a  very  large  number 
of  officers,  he  ought  to  be  able  to  defend  Herat  for  months 
against  anything  the  Russians  can  bring  against  it  for  the 
present.  Of  course  war  with  Russia  is  not  to  be  entered 
on  with  French  gaiety  or  light-heartedness  (light-headed- 
ness  ?),  but  giving  in  to  Russians  is  not  the  way  to  avoid 
war,  and  I  notice  signs  of  giving  in.  A  few  days  ago  the 
Russians  had  entered  '  Afghan  territory,'  now  Mr.  Gladstone 
tells  us  they  are  '  on  debateable  ground.'  " 

There   can    be    no   question    that   had  the  un- 
provoked   Russian   attack   at    Panjdeh  resulted  in 


DEFENCE    OF  HERAT.  95 

war  between  Great  Britain  and  Russia,  it  would 
have  been  the  duty  of  Sir  Peter  Lumsden  and  his 
escort  to  have  marched  into  Herat  and  aided  the 
Afghans  in  its  defence.  As  the  correspondent  of 
the  Pioneer  at  the  time  with  the  Afghan  Boundary 
Commission,  I  remember  writing  very  strongly  on 
the  point ;  but  I  had  a  grave  apprehension  in  my 
mind  that,  should  war  break  out,  the  Commission 
would  have  been  ordered  to  move  into  Persia.  I 
feel  almost  thankful  that  the  issue  was  never  put  to 
the  test.  To  have  seen  thirty  British  officers  and 
five  hundred  good  sabres  and  bayonets  marched  into 
Persia,  while  the  defence  of  Herat  was  left  to  our 
allies  the  Afghans,  would  have  been  too  humiliating. 
The  shades  of  Eldred  Pottinger  would  have  haunted 
us.  The  mistake  made  was  in  moving  our  escort 
of  five  hundred  back  to  Gulran,  instead  of  encamp- 
ing it  at  Panjdeh.  Its  presence  there  was  a  duty 
that  we  owed  to  ourselves  and  to  the  Amir.  The 
"  Panjdeh  affair"  is  one  of  those  incidents  in  history 
to  which  we  can  only  look  back  regretfully  as  a 
"lost  opportunity."  The  part  played  by  Sir  Robert 
Phayre's  Division  in  the  relief  of  Kandahar  in 
August,  1880,  suggests  similar  reflections.  I  have 
always  felt  that  if  the  days  that  were  wasted  near 
the  Kozhak  Pass  had  been  employed  in  pushing  on 
to  Kandahar,  the  Bombay  Division  might  have 
achieved,  or  at  least  shared,  the  honour  which  fell 
to  the  force  sent  from  Kabul. 


96  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER    V. 


PREFERMENT. 


"  Fool  not,  for  all  may  have, 
If  they  dare  try,  a  glorious  life  or  grave." 

George  Herbert. 

In  the  spring  of  1885  Haughton  decided  that  it  was 
time  to  send  his  Httle  son,  who  was  eighteen  months 
old,  home  to  his  father's  house.  For  some  years 
past  the  health  of  his  father  had  been  to  him  a 
growing  anxiety,  as  frequent  allusions  in  his  letters 
show.  The  same  letters  reveal  the  sfreat  strene^th 
of  his  affection  for  and  pride  in  his  boy.  With 
that  frankness  and  that  confidence  in  his  father's 
sympathy  which  always  evinced  itself  in  his  letters, 
he  wrote  freely  to  him  about  his  child.  Once  his 
son  had  gone  home,  his  thoughts  were  there  with 
him.  He  himself  had  never  visited  England  since 
January,  1872.  He  was  not,  however,  despite  his 
wish,  destined  to  see  England  for  some  years  to 
come — not,  unfortunately,  until  after  his  father's 
death. 

In  a  letter  dated  "  Banda,  October  24,  1885," 
we  find  the  germ  of  the  idea  which  gave  him 
that  opportunity  which  he  needed  for  showing  the 


BRIGADE-MAJOR,   DELHI  CAMP.  97 

splendid  qualities  he  possessed  as  a  soldier  and  as 
a  leader  of  men.     He  writes — 

"We  are  in  an  uncomfortable  state  of  uncertainty,  as 
numerous  changes  in  the  native  army  are,  I  believe, 
imminent.  It  is  announced  that  we  are  to  be  formed  in 
regiments  of  three  battalions,  and  it  is  possible  our  system 
of  promotion  will  be  altered.  Then  there  are  several 
new  regiments  to  be  raised.  I  should  much  like  to  be 
appointed  to  one  of  the  new  Sikh  regiments,  but  do  not 
see  any  hope  of  it ;  and,  in  any  case,  shall  not  apply 
unless  names  are  called  for." 

On  November  3,  he  writes — 

"  These  splendid  accounts  of  the  little  Harry  keep  me 
in  first-rate  spirits.  He  is  now  two  years  old,  and  I  have 
indeed  great  cause  to  be  thankful  for  the  uninterrupted 
course  of  health  and  strength  and  progress  he  has  had. 
Before  going  further  I  must  tell  you  the  last  bit  of  news, 
which  is,  that  I  am  going  to  the  great  camp  of  exercise 
in  the  capacity  of  Brigade-Major  of  the  ist  Brigade,  2nd 
Division,  of  the  Northern  Force.  I  was  struck  all  of  a 
heap  when  I  saw  it  in  the  paper  this  morning,  and  hardly 
believed  it,  until  I  saw  it  confirmed  in  general  orders. 
Of  course  I  ought  to  be  and  am  very  thankful,  both  for 
the  honour  of  being  selected  and  for  the  chance  of  its 
opening  the  way  to  a  permanent  appointment  some  day. 
But  I  cannot  help  feeling  very  nervous.  I  have  never 
had  any  experience  of  a  Brigade-Major's  work,  nor  of  a 
camp  of  exercise  in  any  capacity,  nor  of  active  service  in 
any  capacity ;  so  I  can  only  hope  to  make  up  for  want  of 
experience  by  hard  work  and  willing  heart.  But  I  cannot 
help  feeling  that  it  is  very  lucky  for  the  Brigade  that  it 
is  only  a  camp  of  exercise  and  not  real  service.  I  do 
not    imagine   we  get  any  pay,  and  fear  it  will  be  rather 

11 


98  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

expensive  ;  but,  if  I  can  pass  the  ordeal  successfully,  it 
will  have  been  a  grand  thing  for  me,  both  for  the  insight 
into  the  work  of  Brigade-Major,  and  also  in  many  other 
ways,  not  the  least  being  the  opportunity  I  shall  have  of 
studying  the  ways  of  other  native  regiments,  and  picking 
up  hints  and  wrinkles  therefrom." 

Such  is  the  spirit  in  which  John  Haughton,  the 
young  captain  who  afterwards  became  the  hero  of 
the  Tirah  campaign,  welcomed  his  first  nomination 
to  a  staff  appointment — temporary,  it  is  true,  but  a 
greater  test  of  a  soldier's  worth  as  a  staff  officer 
in  the  field  than  all  the  clerical  work  at  Army, 
Divisional,  or  Brigade  Headquarters.  For  the  last 
few  years  incessant  warfare  of  the  pen  has  raged 
in  the  Indian  and  also  in  the  home  papers  as  to 
the  respective  merits  of  the  "P.S.C."  and  "  Non.- 
P.S.C."  officer.  Haughton  was  not  a  Staff  College 
man.  The  spirit  that  worked  in  him  was  not 
born  of  any  "curriculum."  The  Staff  College  cannot 
make  a  good  soldier  out  of  a  man  devoid  of  soldierly 
instinct  or  talent ;  but  given  the  groundwork  of  in- 
stinct and  talent,  it  can  temper  it  by  training,  and 
improve  it  by  knowledge.  The  "coping-stone"  is 
practical  experience.  Add  to  these  a  heart  in  the 
right  place,  as  that  of  Haughton  certainly  was,  and 
we  have  the  beau-ideal  of  the  staff  officer.  Their 
number  is  extremely  limited.  Haughton's  only 
other  staff  appointment  was  a  brief  tenure  of  a 
staff  captaincy  in  the  Intelligence  Division  of  the 
War  Office.  He  found  the  atmosphere  of  the 
establishment    uncongenial    to    him,   and    resigned 


QUALITIES   AS  STAFF  OFFICER.  99 

the  post.  Clerical  work  after  all  was  not  the 
sphere  of  his  abilities.  Despite  all  the  talk  about 
and  craving  after  staff  employ,  there  is  no  finer 
field  for  an  officer  than  regimental  work.  The 
finest  generals  and  best  leaders  of  troops  come  from 
the  ranks,  not  of  the  staff,  but  of  the  regimental 
officers.  Haughton  was  a  splendid  regimental 
officer,  and  a  good  staff  officer  for  field  work.  He 
was  not  a  clerk,  though,  as  a  regimental  or  brigade 
staff  officer,  he  did  his  clerical  work  carefully,  con- 
scientiously, and  accurately. 

At  the  end  of  his  letter  of  November  3, 
Haughton  adds — 

"  There  are  pages  and  pages  of  General  orders  about 
this  camp  of  exercise  which  I  must  study  carefully,  besides 
many  other  things,  to  try  and  make  myself  fit  for  the 
trial.  Mine  is  a  fine  Brigade,  consisting  of  the  14th  and 
96th  Foot,  the  14th  Sikhs,  and  the  ist  Sikhs  {of  the 
Panjab  Frontier  Force)." 

On  November  10,  he  writes — 

"  I  am  doing  my  best  to  make  myself  acquainted  with 
my  duties  as  Brigade-Major,  and  I  find  that  with  my  lack 
of  experience  I  shall  have  a  lot  to  remember.  .  .  .  The 
two  (Ambala  and  Delhi)  forces  when  together  will  number 
close  on  forty  thousand  fighting  men,  and  are  composed 
almost  entirely  of  the  troops  which  were  to  have  gone  to 
meet  the  Russians  in  case  of  war  ;  though  in  that  case 
they  would  have  had  older  and  more  experienced  staff 
officers,  and  I  should  have  been  out  of  it." 

The  officer  who  was  appointed  to  the  command 
of  the  ist  Brigade,  2nd  Division,   Northern  Force, 


lOO  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

was  Colonel  G.  B.  Wolseley,  brother  of  Viscount 
Wolselcy,  and  now  Lieut.  -  General  Sir  George 
Wolseley,  Commanding  the  Forces  in  Madras.  It  is 
curious  that  not  a  single  letter  written  by  Haughton 
to  his  father  between  November  lo,  1885,  and  May 
22,  1886,  is  now  forthcoming.  I  am  therefore  un- 
able to  give  any  account  of  these  manoeuvres — 
the  most  interesting  ever  held  in  India — from 
Haughton's  pen.  I  was  myself  there,  as  Brigade 
and  afterwards  Divisional  Transport  Officer ;  but  I 
did  not  come  in  contact  with  Haughton.  I  know, 
however,  from  the  letters  of  Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer 
and  Major  Gunning  Hunter,  that  Haughton  had 
won  golden  opinions  from  his  Brigadier.  I  there- 
fore decided  to  write  to  the  latter  direct,  and  in 
August,  1898,  received  the  following  reply: — 

"  Woodside,  Ootacamund,  August  lo,  1898. 

"Dear  Major  Yate, 

"  Pray  excuse  the  delay  in  replying  to  your  note 
of  May  28,  which  reached  me  whilst  out  shooting.  I  had 
not  lost  sight  of  it — and  since  my  return  I  have  been 
hunting  everywhere  for  the  diary  kept  either  by  John 
Haughton  himself,  or  my  orderly  officer,  during  the  camp 
of  exercise,  1885-86.  As  yet  I  have  been  unsuccessful, 
and  only  yesterday  I  went  carefully  through  a  box  of 
papers  which  I  thought  contained  the  Journal.  If  I  find  it, 
I  shall  do  what  you  ask  me.  Yes,  I  was  certainly  the  first 
who  brought  poor  Haughton  to  notice  ;  and  the  Adjutant- 
General's  office  at  Simla  can  doubtless  give  you  a  copy  of 
my  report  on  him  after  the  camp  broke  up.  It  was,  I 
know,  to  the  effect  that  Haughton  was  an  exceptionally 
good  staff  officer,  and  one  whom  it  would  be  to  the  best 


GENERAL   SIR    G.    B.    WOLSELEY.  lOI 

interests  of  our  Army  in  India  to  push  to  the  front.  He 
had  lost  his  first  wife  not  long  before  I  became  associated 
with  him  at  Delhi  ;  so  he  was  somewhat  down  in  his 
luck  at  that  time.  Still  he  was  always  a  genial,  pleasant 
member  of  our  little  mess,  and  when  I  had  ladies  in  my 
camp  for  the  big  march  past,  he  was  a  great  favourite 
with  all.  His  great  characteristics  as  a  soldier  were  his 
keenness  and  reliability.  I  learned  before  he  had  been 
many  days  with  me  that  I  could  thoroughly  depend  upon 
any  information  that  he  gave  me.  That  is  a  sine-qua-non, 
in  my  opinion,  in  all  staff  officers.  Then  his  tact  and 
judgment  in  dealing  with  commanding  officers,  and  his 
nice  manner  with  all,  impressed  me  most  favourably.  In 
fact,  I  well  remember  feeling  that  he  was  just  the  man  I 
should  like  to  have  with  me  on  service  ;  and  his  deplorable 
death  and  previous  good  work  in  the  late  campaign  proved 
how  just  my  estimate  of  him  was.  If  I  can  only  find  my 
1885-86  diary,  I  shall  write  again. 

"  Meanwhile  believe  me,  truly  yours, 

"G.  B.  VVOLSELEY." 

An  application  which  I  made  to  the  Adjutant- 
General's  office  at  Simla  v^ras,  however,  unsuccessful 
in  eliciting  any  trace  of  Colonel  G.  B.  Wolseley  s 
report  on  Captain  J.  Haughton.  We  need,  how- 
ever, no  higher  testimony  than  the  kind-hearted 
letter  I  have  just  quoted.  That  Haughton's  con- 
duct of  his  duties  at  the  Ambala- Delhi  manoeuvres 
won  for  him  the  approval  of  the  authorities  is 
proved  by  subsequent  events.  All  eye-witnesses 
of  the  march-past  at  Delhi  early  in  February  (1886) 
will  recall  the  pouring  rain  in  which  it  took  place — 
and    through   which    the   Viceroy  (the   Marquis  of 


I02  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

Dufferin  and  Ava)  and  the  Commander-in-Chief 
sat  on  horseback  unflinchingly — as  also  the  terrible 
state  of  the  ground.  It  became,  after  the  artillery 
and  cavalry  had  passed  over  it,  ankle-deep  in  mud. 
It  struck  me  then,  and  has  recurred  to  me  often 
since,  that  a  prescient  Staff  would  have  made  the 
infantry  march  past  just  outside  the  line  which  the 
artillery  and  cavalry  had  ploughed  up.  They  would 
still  have  been  within  a  reasonable  distance  of  the 
Viceroy  and  Commander-in-Chief — a  distance  at 
which  they  could  be  well  seen,  and  from  which 
they  could  salute  without  loss  of  effect.  As  it  was, 
however,  they  were  left  to  plough  through  the  mud. 
Every  good  battalion,  of  course,  braced  itself  for 
the  occasion ;  and  indeed  the  admirable  steadiness 
with  which  some  battalions,  notably  the  Highland 
Light  Infantry,  went  by,  elicited  from  the  spectators 
loud  marks  of  approval.  There  were,  it  is  true, 
exceptions ;  but  in  passing  judgment  on  them  we 
must  remember  that  in  such  mud  the  native  shoe 
must  come  off.  One  regiment  was  very  severely 
and  deservedly  censured  for  falling  into  an  unseemly 
and  unsoldierly  state  of  disorder  on  this  occasion. 
Possibly  some  of  that  censure  might  have  been 
appropriately  transferred  to  the  Staff  which  failed 
to  rise  to  the  occasion,  and  left  the  troops  to  worry 
through  the  mire  as  best  they  could. 

On    June    12,     1886,     Haughton    wTites    home 
thus  : — 

"  I  told  you   last  week  about   my  appointment  to  the 


WING   COMMANDER  jgTH  B.   I.  103 

39th  Bengal  Infantry.*  I  have  since  received  the  official 
order,  so  it  is  all  right,  and  I  shall  probably  start  on 
Monday  night  for  Cawnpore.  I  had  a  letter  a  short  time 
since  from  Colonel  Wolseley,  who  was  my  Brigadier  at  the 
camp.  He  very  kindly  asked  me  to  come  and  stay  with 
him  at  Dalhousie.  He  also  enclosed  the  copy  of  a  letter 
he  had  sent  to  the  Military  Secretary  to  the  Commander- 
in-Chief,  asking  that  I  might  be  appointed  to  the  Brigade 
Majorship  at  Sialkot,  which  will  shortly  be  vacant,  and 
recommending  me  for  it  in  the  most  flattering  terms.  Of 
course  it  is  most  gratifying  to  me  to  know  that  I  per- 
formed my  duties  at  the  camp  to  his  satisfaction,  but  the 
authorities,  having  just  given  me  this  promotion  (a  wing 
command  in  the  39th  Bengal  Infantry),  are  not  likely  to 
give  me  a  staff  appointment  just  now.  I  am  afraid  that 
they  may  think  that  I  have  been  trying  to  'work  the 
oracle,'  but  the  request  on  Colonel  Wolseley's  part  was 
quite  spontaneous  and  voluntary.  I  have  not  asked  for 
anything,  and  do  not  intend  to.  What  a  change  in  one's 
prospects   a   single   day  brings   forth — from   seventh  in  a 

*  Extract  from  Regimental  Orders  by  Lieut.-Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer,        668 

Officiating  Commandant  loth  Bengal  Infantry.  r~; 

CO.  s 

'  Thursday,  June  10,  i886.        order  on 
"With  reference  to  regimental  order  No.  663,  of  June  9,  1886,  Captain 
Lieut.-Colonel  C.  H.  Palmer,  Officiating  Commandant,  cannot  permit  to^"^ 
Captain  J.  Haughton,  who  has  been  with  the  regiment  nearly  ten  years,  transfer, 
to  leave  it  without  hereby  placing  on  record  his  very  high  opinion  of  his 
character  and  his  qualifications  as  an  officer,  and  his  esteem  for  him 
as  a  friend  and  a  brother  officer.     In  losing  Captain  Haughton  the 
regiment  loses  an  officer  who  has  always  had  its  interests  closely  at 
heart,  and  one  who  has  effectively  done  everything  in  his  power  to 
uphold  its  good  name,  and  Lieut.-Colonel  Palmer  feels  sure  he  only 
expresses,  in  the  above  remarks,  the  feelings  of  all  ranks  in  the  corps, 
and  that  all  with  him  congratulate  Captain  Haughton  on  his  pro- 
motion  in  the  39th  Regiment  Bengal  Infantry,  and  that  their  best 
wishes  for  his  welfare  go  with  him. 

"J.  Gunning  Hunter,  Lieutenant, 

"Adjutant  loth  Bengal  Infantry." 


I04  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

regiment  to  being   third,  and   to  a  position  of  responsi- 
bility." * 

In  March,  1887,  the  loth  Bengal  Infantry- 
being  ordered  on  active  service  in  Burma,  Captain 
Haughton  offered  to  resign  his  wing  in  the  39th 
and  rejoin  the  loth.  The  Commander-in-Chief  did 
not  accept  the  offer,  but  very  shortly  afterwards 
appointed  him  to  a  permanent  wing  in  the  35th 
Sikhs,  which  was  now  ordered  to  be  raised.  On 
May  12  Captain  Haughton  wrote — 

"The  35th  is  to  be  raised  at  Ferozpur,  and  is  to  be 
composed  entirely  of  'Jat'  Sikhs  from  north  of  the 
Sutlej.  They  are  the  very  best  class  of  Sikhs.  I  believe 
the  usual  rule  about  not  being  able  to  take  leave  until  one 
has  been  ten  months  in  an  appointment,  will  not  apply  in 
my  case,  as  I  have  been  in  a  cognate  appointment  ;  but 
my  leave  will  probably  be  delayed  two  or  three  months. 
That  is  a  sore  disappointment  to  me,  and  will  be  so,  I 
fear,  to  my  dear  old  father  ;  but  it  would  have  been  pro- 
fessional suicide  to  have  declined  the  appointment  which, 
please  remember,  I  never  applied  for." 

His  letters  for  the  next  few  months  show  that 
the  news  he  received  of  his  father's  health  was  any- 
thing but  good,  and  indicate  the  anxiety  and  appre- 
hension he  felt  that  he  might  not  see  him  again.f 
He  chafed  under  the  obligation  which  forced  him 
to  stay  with  his  new  corps  until  the  recruiting  and 
training  of  it  was  advanced  somewhat.      "  Just  at 

*  The  39th  Bengal  Infantry  was  then  the  "Allygarh  regiment." 
It  is  now  the  "  39th  Garhwalis." 

t  General  J.  C.  Haughton  had  a  serious  fall  in  the  streets  of  Paris 
in  January  or  February  of  1887. 


WITH   THE  35 TH  SIKHS.  105 

present  what  spare  time  I  have,"  he  writes  in  July 
from  Ferozpur,  "  is  taken  up  with  Panjabi  and  books 
relating-  to  the  Sikhs." 

His  father  to  the  last  retained  his  keenness  to 
learn  anything  he  could  about  the  Gurkhas  who 
escaped  from  the  siege  and  massacre  of  Charikar 
and  who  settled  in  its  neighbourhood.  On  July  '^^o, 
1887,  his  son  writes  thus  from  Ferozpur — 

"  One  officer  in  this  regiment  (35th  Sikhs)  says  he  saw 
one  of  your  Gurkhas  at  Siah  Sang.  He  had,  of  course,  be- 
come a  Mohammedan,  and  appeared  to  be  tolerably  well-off. 
This  officer  also  saw,  at  Tangi  Wardak  in  Maidan,  on  the 
road  to  Ghazni,  an  Englishman  who  stated  he  had  been  a 
soldier  in  a  British  regiment,  and  that  he  had  been  left 
behind  wounded  in  January,  1842,  and  had  been  taken 
care  of  by  an  Afghan  whose  daughter  he  had  subsequently 
married.  Of  course  he  had  turned  Mussulman.  He  had 
almost  forgotten  English.  He  said  he  was  well-off  and 
happy  and  had  no  wish  to  leave  the  country.  I  am  on 
the  track  of  an  officer  of  the  4th  Gurkhas,  who,  I  am  told, 
had  a  long  conversation  with  the  quondam  Gurkha." 

In  the  latter  part  of  July,  1887,  Haughton  v/as 
at  Amritsar  on  recruiting  duty.  By  September  the 
35th  Sikhs  had  been  recruited  up  to  the  full  strength 
of  912  of  all  ranks.  On  September  19  telegraphic 
news  of  his  father's  death  reached  John  Haughton. 
His  letter,  expressive  of  his  sense  of  his  own  loss 
and  of  his  sympathy  for  his  step-mother,  is  such  as 
might  be  expected  from  one  with  so  kind  and  true 
a  heart,  and  such  strong  religious  convictions.  With 
his  sympathy  is  mingled  deep  regret  that  his  father 


I06  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

should  have  been  taken  away  within  a  few  months 
of  the  time  when  he  himself  confidently  looked 
forward  to  obtaining  two  years'  leave  home,  and 
a  strong  tendency,  however  uncalled  for,  to  reproach 
himself  for  not  having  gone  home  earlier,  and  so 
seen  his  father  before  his  death.  (He  had  never 
seen  him  since  1867,  when  he  was  fifteen  years  old.) 
It  was  on  April  14  of  the  following  year  (1888)  that 
he  landed  in  England  after  sixteen  years'  absence. 
It  is  evident  that  he  soon  afterwards  turned  his 
attention  to  the  study  of  the  Russian  language,  for, 
on  February  20,  1889,  he  writes  from  St.  Petersburg, 
whither,  after  passing  the  preliminary  examination, 
he  had  gone  to  read  for  the  interpretership.  Three 
letters,  of  no  great  interest  or  importance,  are  the 
only  relics  of  his  residence  in  St.  Petersburg. 

In  August,  1890,  he  returned  to  England, 
qualified  as  an  interpreter  in  Russian,  and  was 
offered  the  post  of  Staff-Captain  in  the  Intelligence 
Division  of  the  War  Office  in  succession  to  Major 
A.  F.  Barrow.  During  the  autumn  of  that  year 
I  myself  visited  Russia  and,  subsequently,  Trans- 
Caspia  and  Turkistan.  On  my  return  thence  I 
made  the  acquaintance  of  Captain  J.  Haughton, 
whom  I  found  employed  in  the  Intelligence  Division 
of  the  War  Office.  He  did  not  stay  there  long. 
In  August,  1 89 1,  he  sent  in  his  resignation,  and 
early  in  1892  returned  to  India  and  rejoined  his 
appointment  as  wing  commander  in  the  35th  Sikhs. 
On  October  29,  1891,  he  had  attained  the  rank  of 
Major. 


7      ,  ~^f  %,     ^ 


Ij     oc 


COMMANDANT  36TH  SIKHS.  107 

The  period  of  John  Haughton's  life  on  which  I 
am  now  entering  is,  strange  to  say,  the  one  of  which 
I  have  fewest  records.  Not  a  single  letter  of  his 
of  this  period  has  come  into  my  hands.  He  at 
once,  on  rejoining,  assumed  the  duties  of  Officiating 
Second-in-Command,  and  on  April  20,  1893,  was 
made  permanent  in  that  appointment.  On  April 
15,  1893,  he  became  Officiating  Commandant,  during 
the  absence  of  Colonel  Goldney  on  leave.  On  June 
25,  1894,  he  was  appointed  Commandant  of  the  36th 
Sikhs,  having  then  less  than  twenty-three  years' 
service.  His  promotion  had  been  unusually  rapid, 
for  the  Bengal  Army.  On  September  18,  1894,  he 
was  married  at  Durham  to  Miss  Helen  Barmby, 
daughter  of  the  Rev.  J.  Barmby,  D.D.,  Rector  of 
Pittington,  near  Durham.  He  and  his  wife  left 
England  for  India  on  October  12,  and,  after  a  brief 
visit  to  Nowgong,  went  on  to  Ambala.  There  he 
rejoined  the  36th  Sikhs,  the  regiment  in  command 
of  which  he  was  destined  to  do  such  splendid 
service.  After  spending  a  week  at  a  Darbar  camp 
at  Lahore,  Major  Haughton  marched  with  his 
regiment  to  Bannu.  His  late  Commandant  in  the 
35th  Sikhs,  Lieut. -Colonel  Goldney,  marked  his 
promotion  out  of  the  regiment  to  the  command 
of  the  36th  by  the  following  complimentary  order, 
dated  Nowgong,  November  9,  1894: — 

"The  Commanding  Officer  takes  this  opportunity  of 
conveying  to  Major  Haughton  the  great  regret  which  he, 
the  officers,  native  officers,  and  the  rank-and-file  feel  at  his 
having  left  the  regiment.     His  removal  to  a  higher  position, 


I08  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

for  which  he  is  so  fitted,  deprives  the  regiment  of  a  thorough 
soldier,  an  efficient  officer,  and  a  good  friend ;  and  in 
bidding  him  farewell,  Licut.-Colonel  Goldney  feels  sure 
that  all  ranks  join  him  in  wishing  Major  Haughton  every 
success  in  the  future." 

At  Bannu  in  December,  1894,  commenced  Major 
Haughton's  experience  of  frontier  service.  Up  to 
that  time  Ferozpur,  Amritsar,  and  Lahore  were  the 
most  westerly  stations  to  which  service  in  India  had 
called  him.  He  had  not  been  three  years  on  the 
frontier  when  war  with  the  Afridis  put  his  capabili- 
ties to  the  test.  As  all  know,  he  came  out  of  that 
ordeal  with  the  highest  credit  and  honour  to  himself. 
Five  months  at  Bannu  were  followed  by  twenty 
months  at  Peshawar.  In  November,  1895,  he  was 
made  a  temporary  Lieut. -Colonel  under  the  new  war- 
rant. Just  before  Christmas,  1896,  the  36th  Sikhs 
moved  from  Peshawar  to  Kohat,  and  in  1897  were 
ordered  to  garrison  the  Samana  forts.  Mrs. 
Haughton  accompanied  her  husband,  and  stayed 
with  him  at  Fort  Lockhart  till  May,  1897,  when  she 
went  to  England.  She  thus  escaped  the  trials 
which,  as  I  shall  presently  tell,  awaited  Mrs.  Des 
Voeux.  A  little  daughter,  named  Helen  Katherine, 
was  born  to  Colonel  Haughton  on  September  2, 
1897,  at  Oxford.  This  was  the  eve  of  the  first 
attack  on  the  Fort  of  Gulistan,  which  took  place 
on  September  3  and  4,  an  account  of  which  I  am 
about  to  give  in  the  next  chapter. 


(     i09     ) 


CHAPTER   VI. 

THE    DEFENCE   OF   THE    SAMANA    FORTS. 


'Mid  dark  ravines,  by  precipices  vast, 

Did  there  and  here  your  dreadful  conflict  sway." 

Archbishop  Trenxh. 


We  now  approach  that  period  of  Lieut. -Colonel 
Haughton's  life,  in  which  his  capacity  as  a  soldier 
and  as  a  man,  already  sternly  tested  in  the  various 
trials  that  befall  mankind,  was  to  be  put  to  the 
crucial  test  of  active  service.  We  have  seen  him 
pass  through  the  ordeal  of  the  loss  of  wife,  father, 
and  brother,  and  throughout  it  bear  himself  like  a 
noble  and  Christian  man.  We  have  seen  him 
selected  to  fill,  firstly,  an  honourable  though 
honorary  staff  appointment  at  the  Delhi  Camp  of 
exercise ;  secondly,  a  S2ib.  pro  tern,  wing  com- 
mand in  a  regiment  which  wanted  specially  able 
handling ;  thirdly,  a  permanent  wing  command  in  a 
newly  raised  frontier  regiment  (35th  Sikhs) ;  and 
fourthly,  the  command,  at  an  unusually  early  age,  of 
the  36th  Sikhs,  the  sister  battalion  of  the  35th.  We 
may  look  upon  each  of  these  appointments  as  a  case 
of  special  "selection."     They  show  how  highly  he 


no  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

was  thought  of  by  his  superiors.  Throughout  his 
letters  which  communicate  these  successive  appoint- 
ments to  his  friends  we  find  a  tone  of  unassumed 
modesty,  at  times  even  of  diffidence  in  himself, 
coupled  with  a  plainly  expressed  determination  to 
try  and  do  his  duty  in  each  and  all  of  them.  That 
he  did  his  duty  his  successive  promotions  are  the 
plainest  proof.  His  friend  and  brother  officer  Major 
Gunning  Hunter  mentions  how,  from  1884  onwards, 
he  devoted  himself  steadily  and  keenly  to  the  study 
of  books  connected  with  his  profession.  When 
nominated  in  the  summer  of  1885  for  duty  as 
Brigade- Major  at  the  coming  manoeuvres,  he  pre- 
pared himself  for  the  task  before  him  by  a  careful 
study  of  the  Orders  issued  for  the  camp  and  of  the 
Standing  Orders  of  the  Army.  When  sent  to  a  Sikh 
regiment  we  find  him  at  once  studying  the  history 
of  the  Sikhs  and  the  Panjabi  dialect.  When  sent 
to  the  frontier  in  1894  he  learnt  and  passed  an  ex- 
amination in  Pashtu.  Though  this  is  compulsory 
for  all  officers  serving  in  Pathan  or  frontier  regi- 
ments, it  is  probably  not  compulsory  for  officers  in 
Sikh  regiments.  When  Colonel  Haughton  received 
his  first — and,  unhappily,  last  experience  of  active 
service,  he  was  one  who  knew  the  native  soldier 
thoroughly,  and  had  been  long  enough  at  Bannu, 
Peshawar,  and  Kohat  to  pick  up  that  knowledge 
of  camp  life  and  campaigning  on  the  north-west 
frontier  which  is  essential  for  a  man  who  would  lead 
troops  against  Pathan  tribesmen.  The  one  thing 
that  he  had  not  done  was  to  lead  his  men  in  actual 


THE    VALUE    OF   WAR.  Ill 

fighting.  When  he  did  do  that,  he  evinced  a  genius 
as  a  leader  of  men  such  as  few,  if  any,  have  sur- 
passed or  even  equalled. 

War  and  fighting  are  the  touchstones  of  the 
character  of  the  nation  and  of  the  individual,  as  the 
South  African  War  has  so  well  shown.  Military 
training  and  discipline,  despite  all  that  such  writers 
as  Ouida  and  Mr.  Stead  may  allege,  exercise  good 
influence  on  the  citizen.  The  Peace  Conference  of 
1899  (despite  a  little  sentimental  humbug,  especially 
among  ecclesiastics)  and  the  South  African  War 
which  so  promptly  followed  it,  have  drawn  from 
the  best  of  our  writers,  orators,  and  preachers  a 
wonderful  unanimity  of  testimony  to  the  value 
of  war  as  a  training-ground  for  mankind.  The 
greatest  English  poet  (Tennyson)  and  one  of 
the  best  English  prose  writers  (Ruskin)  of  the 
nineteenth  century  avow,  in  strong  outbursts  of 
eloquent  feeling,  their  belief  in  war,  and  not  in 
peace,  as  one  of  the  great  purifying  and  ennobling 
agencies  of  the  world.* 

It  matters  not  whether  the  war  be  waged  with 
the  sword,  the  tongue,  or  the  pen,  in  the  arena  of 
the  battlefield,  or  on  the  floor  of  the  House,  in  the 
pulpit,  on  the  platform,  or  in  print  :  it  is  in  the  stress 
of  the  struggle  that  the  fibre  of  characters  is  formed 
and  put  to  the  test,  that  reputations  are  made  or 
lost.  A  tame  life  is  the  lot  of  a  tame  nature.  To 
prove  ourselves  men  we  must  fight,  be  our  methods 

*  In  "  Maud,"  and  in  the  lecture  on  '  War '  in  ''  The  Crown  of 
Wild  Olive." 


112  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

of  fighting  what  they  may.  Those  who  prate  of 
universal  peace  would  rob  the  very  salt  of  the 
world  of  its  savour,  and,  in  so  doing  (strange 
irony),  themselves  (a  miserable  minority)  cast 
down  the  gauntlet  to  the  rest  of  mankind.  The 
peacemonger  heeds  little  that  "charity"  which 
St.  Paul  preached. 

Haughton  prated  not  of  peace,  nor  did  he  seek 
to  take  offence  lightly.  It  is  rare  in  his  letters  to 
find  him  adducing  arguments  in  his  own  favour  ;  but 
(In  a  letter  to  his  father)  in  commenting  on  his  one 
serious  dispute  during  his  service,  he  remarked  that 
it  had  been  in  his  favour  that  he  had  never  pre- 
viously had  any  disagreement  with  any  officer,  senior 
or  junior.  He  was  a  man  who  took  up  a  clear  and 
firm,  but  not  aggressive,  attitude  in  all  his  relations 
with  his  fellow-men  ;  and  there  is  no  doubt  that  this 
definite  style  of  action  is  a  very  potent  preventative 
of  misunderstanding  and  consequent  mischief.  We 
see  it  in  the  minor  relations  of  everyday  life ;  we 
trace  it  in  the  great  problems  of  international 
politics.  A  wavering  parent  produces  a  disobedient 
child.  Diplomatic  shilly-shallying  may  provoke  a 
war  which  plain  speech  would  have  obviated. 
'*  Wobbling  "  is  a  fertile  source  of  evil.  Haughton 
was  no  "wobbler."  He  was  straightforward,  firm, 
and  true  to  the  core.  That  is  his  moral  character 
in  a  nutshell.  We  have  now  to  portray  him  also  as 
a  leader  of  men  in  battle. 

The   year    1897,    which,    as   being   that  of  the 
Diamond  Jubilee  of  her  Majesty  the  Queen,  should, 


SITUATION  IN  INDIA.  II3 

to  satisfy  every  loyal  Briton,  have  been  a  year  of 
ideal  prosperity  and  peace,  was,  unfortunately,  in 
India,  a  year  of  trouble.  Yet  there  can  be  no  doubt 
that  such  seasons  of  trouble  brinof  blessingrs  in 
their  train,  and  out  of  seeminof  evil  comes  sfood. 
Famine  and  plague  in  India  were  met  by  unflinching 
efforts  on  the  part  of  the  Government  and  officials 
of  that  dependency,  while  private  charity  in  Great 
Britain  and  the  Colonies  contributed  more  than 
generously  to  the  good  work  of  relief  The  same 
has  been  done  in  1900,  despite  the  millions  contri- 
buted to  the  comfort  of  our  soldiers  in  South  Africa 
and  their  families  at  home.  If  a  certain  semi- 
educated  section  of  the  native  middle-class  in  India 
paraded  its  disloyalty  in  the  summer  of  1897,  that 
has  been  more  than  counterbalanced  by  the  splendid 
loyalty  exhibited  by  the  princes  and  nobles  of  that 
country,  both  during  the  frontier  warfare  of  that  year 
and  more  recently  during  our  war  in  South  Africa 
and  China.  If  war  be  indeed  a  thing  to  be  avoided 
as  far  as  possible,  nevertheless  there  are  moments 
when  it  is  felt  that  war  comes  not  inopportunely. 
That  the  discontent  of  the  frontier  tribesmen  must 
have  taken  overt  form,  sooner  or  later,  there  is  little 
doubt.  Coming  as  war  did  in  1897,  when  no  other 
serious  ties  fettered  either  the  Government  or  the 
Army  of  India,  and  when  the  Amir  Abdurrahman 
Khan  was  firmly  seated  on  his  throne  and  strong 
enough  to  hold  his  own  on  either  of  his  frontiers,  it 
found  us  not  unprepared,  and  not  actively  engaged 
elsewhere.     Egypt  alone  at  that  time  was  locking 

I 


114  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

up  a  few  thousand  British  troops.  A  year  later  the 
victory  at  Omdurman,  the  defeat  of  French  designs 
at  Fashoda,  and  the  success  of  our  arms  in  Uganda 
had  established  British  rule  unequivocally  in  the 
Soudan.  We  were  then  free  for  South  Africa.  Our 
war  there  has  been  as  opportune  as  that  on  the  north- 
west frontier  in  1897.  Be  it  due  to  our  national  good 
fortune,  or  to  the  able  diplomacy  of  our  statesmen, 
our  hands  have,  during  both  wars,  been  free  from 
serious  ties  elsewhere.  On  the  heels  of  either  war 
has  trodden  trouble  in  China,  a  trouble  in  which  we 
have  been  well  able  to  support  our  own  interests. 

What  has  become  known  as  "  the  rising  on  the 
north-west  frontier,"  in  1897,  fell  unexpectedly  upon 
India.  The  Tirah  campaign  was  the  final  episode 
in  the  warlike  operations  which  resulted  from  that 
"rising."  The  story  of  it  has  already  been  told, 
more  or  less,  by  other  writers.  I  propose  to  tell 
here  merely  the  part  which  Lieut. -Colonel  John 
Haughton  and,  more  indirectly,  his  regiment  the 
36th  Sikhs,  took  in  that  campaign.* 

*  The  36th,  like  the  35th  Sikhs,  were  raised  in  the  hot  weather  of 
1887.  The  two  were  sister  battahons.  As  has  been  recorded,  John 
Haughton  assisted  in  raising  the  35th,  and  has  left  on  record  that 
when  he  joined  that  corps  at  Ferozepur  in  May,  1887,  "there  were 
only  about  one  hundred  men  in  the  regiment,"  and  that  "  by  August 
and  September  the  regiment  had  reached  its  full  strength  of  912  of  all 
ranks."  I  learn  from  the  Indian  papers  that  the  36th  was  raised  by 
Colonel  "Jim"  Cooke  and  Captain  H.  R.  Holmes,  with  Lieutenant 
(now  Brevet-Major)  C.  R.  Johnstone  as  Adjutant.  Captain  Holmes 
was  the  biggest  and  most  powerful  man  of  his  time  in  the  Indian 
Army,  and  performed  at  least  one  gallant  act  in  saving  life.  It  is  said 
that  when  recruiting  for  the  36th  Sikhs  in  the  Ludhiana  District,  he 
used  to  challenge  all  and  any  to  wrestle  (the  Sikhs  are  great  wrestlers 
and  fine  athletes),  the  conditions  being  that  the  competitors  should, 


i8oo — 18^0 — igoo.  1 1 5 

I  have,  in  the  main,  based  my  account  on  hitherto 
unpublished  papers,  but  for  certain  details  and 
descriptions  I  am  indebted  to  the  Times  of  India. 

The  year  1900  may  be  regarded  as  the  centenary 
of  the  north-west  frontier  of  India,  in  that  in  1800 
the  Government  of  that  dependency  first  became 
alive  to  the  fact  that  it  had  a  frontier  vulnerable  to 
an  enemy  from  Europe.  It  was  in  that  year  that 
the  apprehension  of  a  rumoured  Russo-French  inva- 
sion of  India  made  the  Governor-General  despatch 
Captain  John  Malcolm  on  his  first  embassy  to  the 
Court  of  the  Shah  of  Persia.  Again,  1900  may  be 
regarded  as  the  jubilee  of  the  same  frontier,  for 
early  in  1850  Sir  Colin  Campbell  led  our  first  fron- 
tier expedition  against  the  Adam  Khel  Afridis. 
General  Sir  Henry  (then  Lieutenant)  Norman  was 
his  Brigade- Major.  The  60th  Rifles  took  part  in 
this  foray,  and  pitted  their  rifles  against  the  Pathan 
jezail.  At  that  time,  it  is  believed,  no  other  infantry 
in  India  had  rifled  firearms.  The  Afridi  early 
established  his  reputation  as  a  dangerous  enemy  in 
the  hills.  Mr.  (now  Sir  Richard)  Temple,  when 
secretary  to  the  Panjab  Government,  writing  in  or 
about  i860,  describes  the  Afridi  thus  :  "  As  soldiers 
they  are  amongst  the  best  on  the  frontier.     They 

if  worsted,  enlist.  This  novel  method  so  stimulated  the  recruiting, 
that  the  regiment  is  said  to  have  been  fit  to  appear  before  the 
Commander-in-Chief  at  a  camp  of  exercise  at  Mcerut  during  the  cold 
weather  of  1S87-8S.  In  1891  the  regiment  left  Delhi  for  Manipur,  ']■]^ 
strong,  every  man  being  five  feet  eight  inches,  or  over,  and  thirty-six 
inches  round  the  chest.  Captain  Holmes,  having  done  his  duty  in 
raising  a  regiment  physically  worthy  of  his  own  splendid  physique, 
retired  from  the  Army  in  1892. 


I  1 6  JOHN  HA  UGHTON. 

are  good  shots.  Their  tactics  resemble  those  of  the 
other  tribes.  They  retreat  before  the  foe  as  he 
advances,  and  press  upon  him  as  he  retires."  That 
gives  their  tactics  in  a  nutshell.  During  and  just 
after  the  Tirah  expedition,  the  Press  in  India  teemed 
with  contributions  from  writers,  obviously  very  in- 
experienced, who  appeared  to  think  that  the  Pathans 
had  adopted  new  tactics.  Not  so  at  all.  The 
Afridis  taught  us  nothing  that  Sir  Colin  Campbell, 
Sir  Neville  Chamberlain,  Sir  Sydney  Cotton,  and 
Sir  Harry  Lumsden  did  not  know  forty  years  ago, 
and  which  many  other  frontier  leaders  have  learned 
since.  The  Afridis  were  faithful  to  their  old  Fabian 
tactics,  almost  to  a  fault.  One  new  feature  was 
introduced  into  the  fighting.  Many  of  the  Pathans 
were  armed  with  long-range  and  rapid-firing  breech- 
loaders, and  used  smokeless  ammunition.  {Vide 
Appendix  A.) 

When  the  Afridi  and  Orakzai  *  clans  rose  against 
the  Government  of  India  in  August,  1897,  Lieut- 
Colonel  Haughton  with  his  regiment  was  holding 
the  forts  and  fortified  posts  on  the  Samana  range, 
which  runs  westward  from  Hangu,  an  important 
post  situated  about  twenty-five  miles  west  of  Kohat. 
The  Samana  range  has  the  Khanki  valley  on  its 
north  and  the  Miranzai  valley  on  the  south.  The 
Government  of  India,  except  in  the  direction  of  the 
Khyber,  which  was  left  to  its  fate,  had  taken  prompt 


*  The  chief  sections  of  the  Orakzai  are  four — namely,  Daulatzai, 
Ismailzai,  Lashkarzai,  and  Hamsaya.  The  whole  clan  is  also  split 
into  two  factions — Samil  and  Gar. 


THE   SAM  ANA   DEFENCES.  II7 

military  measures  to  meet  and  cope  with  the  clanger 
that  threatened  our  frontier  outposts  from  Peshawar 
to  the  Kurram  valley.  Major- General  Yeatman- 
Biggs  was  placed  in  command  at  Hangu,  having  at 
his  disposal  a  body  of  troops  aggregating  the 
strength  of  a  weak  division. 

The  main  positions  occupied  by  the  36th  Sikhs 
on  the  crest  of  the  Samana  ridge  were  the  two 
fortified  posts  known  as  Fort  Lockhart  (or  Mastan) 
and  Fort  Cavagnari  (or  Gulistan),  the  former  being 
about  nine  and  the  latter  twelve  miles  west  of  Hangu. 
Both  these  forts,  which  had  been  erected  soon  after 
the  Miranzai  expedition  under  Sir  William  Lockhart 
in  1 88 1,  were  rectangular  in  form,  and  had  stone  walls 
from  twelve  to  fifteen  feet  in  height.  To  each  was 
attached  a  small  hornwork,  the  walls  of  which  were 
very  much  lower.* 

In  each  fort  flank  defence  was  provided  by  loop- 
holed  bastions  at  diagonally  opposite  corners.  Fort 
Lockhart  could  hold  about  three  hundred.  Fort 
Gulistan  about  two  hundred  men.  In  addition  to 
these,  picquet  posts,  somewhat  similarly  protected, 
had  been  established  at  Saragarhi  (about  a  mile  and 
a  half  west  of  Fort  Lockhart  and  a  mile  and  three- 
quarters  east  of  Gulistan),  Dhar,  and  Sartop,  and  at 
the  Crag  and  Sangar  picquets.     These  were  built 

*  "  The  so-called  hornwork  at  Fort  Gulistan  is  an  enclosure  about 
eighty  yards  long  by  thirty  broad,  having  the  fort  on  one  side,  and  being 
surrounded  by  a  wall  of  loose  stones  (in  local  parlance,  a  "  sangar  ") 
on  the  other  three  sides.  This  wall  had  been  temporarily  improved 
in  places  by  logs  of  firewood,  and  by  Hour  bags  and  kerosine  tins 
filled  with  earth  to  give  a  little  head  cover  to  the  troops." — Pioneer. 


Il8  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

to  accommodate  each  a  garrison  of  from  twenty-five 
to  fifty  men  in  strength.  We  find,  however,  that 
Saragarhi,  which  was  considered  the  most  important 
of  these  minor  forts,  in  that  through  it  signalHng 
communication  was  maintained  between  Forts  Lock- 
hart  and  GuHstan  and  along  the  Samana  range, 
was  held  by  twenty-one  men  only. 

Sangar  was  held  by  forty-four  rifles,  and  a 
reinforcement  of  a  native  officer  and  thirty-seven 
men  was  sent  to  Dhar  by  Colonel  Haughton 
during  the  first  attack  of  the  Orakzais  on  the 
Samana.  As  they  each  subsequently  had  to  stand 
a  siege  of  thirty-two  hours,  it  was  well  that  they 
were  properly  manned.  In  addition  to  these  posts, 
which  were  all  held  by  the  36th  Sikhs,  there  were 
four  others  held  by  the  border  military  police  and 
by  tribal  levies,  viz.  Lakka,  Tsalai,  Gogra,  and 
Saifuldarra.  As  will  be  seen  by  a  reference  to  the 
map,  all  these  eleven  forts,  large  and  small,  are 
situated  on  the  crest  of  the  Samana  range,  except 
Saifuldarra,  which  is  close  to  the  right  bank  of  the 
Khanki  river. 

On  August  25  information  was  received  that  a 
large  force  (or  "lashkar,"  in  local  parlance)  of 
Orakzais  was  assembling  at  Karappa,  near  the 
tri-junction  of  the  Chagru,  Sampagha,  and  Khanki 
valleys.  (I  may  mention  that  the  fighting  strength 
of  the  Orakzais  and  of  the  Afridis  is  stated  to  be 
approximately  twenty-five  thousand  men  each.) 
This  force  was  afterwards  estimated  at  twelve 
thousand  men.      It  was  considered  inadvisable  by 


FIRST  ATTACK  BY   ORAKZAIS.  I  19 

those  in  chief  military  and  political  authority  to 
precipitate  hostilities  by  attacking  this  "lashkar." 
The  advantage  of  the  initiative  was  thus  lost,  and 
one  or  two  of  the  minor  Samana  posts  suffered 
before  help  could  be  sent  to  them  from  Hangu. 
On  August  27  this  Orakzai  force  made  a  general 
attack  on  the  posts  all  along  the  Samana  ridge. 
The  police  posts  at  Lakka  and  Saifuldarra,  at  the 
east  end,  were  captured  and  destroyed.  Soon  after 
daybreak  the  enemy  appeared  in  force  on  the 
Samana  Suk,  about  a  mile  west  of  Fort  Gulistan, 
which  was  held  by  Major  Des  Voeux  with  a 
hundred  and  fifty  rifles.  When  intelligence  of 
this  reached  Lieut. -Colonel  Haughton  at  Fort 
Lockhart,  he  started  at  once  with  two  British 
officers  and  a  hundred  and  thirty  rifles  to 
support  Gulistan.  In  the  mean  time  Major  Des 
Voeux  had  reconnoitred  towards  Samana  Suk,  but, 
finding  that  the  enemy  mustered  some  thousands, 
retired.  Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton,  on  his  arrival, 
seeing  that  he  was  so  outnumbered  that  any 
operation  in  the  open  was  out  of  the  question, 
withdrew  all  the  troops  inside  the  fort  of  Gulistan. 
The  Orakzais  occupying  high  ground  about  half  a 
mile  west  of  the  fort  opened  on  it  a  fire,  which  its 
inmates  found  very  trying.  Mrs.  Des  Voeux  and 
her  children  and  a  nurse  named  Teresa  McGrath 
were  among  those  inmates.  To  check  the  enemy's 
fire  Lieut. -Colonel  Haughton  sent  Lieutenants  Munn 
and  Blair  with  half  a  company  to  "  Piquet  Hill,"  some 
three  to  four  hundred  yards  west  of  the  fort.     This 


I20  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

party  was  shortly  afterwards  withdrawn,  but  not  until 
Lieutenant  Blair  had  been  dangerously  wounded,  a 
Snider  bullet  piercing  the  lung.  **  An  inch  higher," 
writes  the  Times  of  India  correspondent,  "  would 
have  severed  the  main  artery ;  two  inches  lower 
would  have  penetrated  the  heart."  His  recovery, 
which  was  complete,  is  remarkable ;  but  that  wound 
prevented  his  taking  that  prominent  part  in  the 
later  defence  of  Gulistan  which  would  have  doubt- 
less won  for  him  some  mark  of  distinction.  In  the 
afternoon  Colonel  Hauorhton  heard  that  the  eastern 
end  of  the  range  was  also  being  attacked.  He  at 
once  sent  back  to  Fort  Lockhart  half  the  detach- 
ment which  he  had  brought  with  him  in  the  morning. 
Later  in  the  evening,  when  the  Orakzais  withdrew 
from  before  Gulistan,  he  once  more  reconnoitred  as 
far  as  the  Samana  Suk,  from  which  he  could  see 
the  enemy  occupying  the  Chagru  Kotal.  On  the 
morning  of  the  28th  he  returned  to  Fort  Lockhart, 
and  learnt  that  the  forts  at  Gogra  and  Tsalai  had 
been  destroyed  by  the  enemy.  The  border  police, 
or  levies,  appear  to  have  made  no  attempt  to  defend 
any  of  these  posts,  but  abandoned  them  with  a  timely 
discretion  that  secured  their  own  lives. 

The  latest  departure  in  frontier  policy  is  an 
orgfanization  of  frontier  militia  under  British  officers. 
It  is  a  purely  probationary  policy,  of  which  time 
alone  can  attest  the  value.  The  "border  militia," 
or  "levies,"  which  have  been  in  use  on  the 
frontier  for  the  last  half-century,  appear  to  have 
always    known   the    right   moment   to  "save  their 


FRONTIER  POSTS  AND   LEVIES.  121 

own  skins."  The  Panjab  Government  appears  to 
have  recognized  this  right  to  "  save  their  own 
skins  "  as  one  of  their  privileges.  Usually  when 
we  employ  and  pay  troops,  we  expect  them  to 
do  the  duty  for  which  they  are  employed  and 
paid,  viz.  in  this  case  to  defend  their  posts  and 
protect  our  subjects.  We  must  presume  that  the 
abandonment  of  the  Khyber  Rifles  to  their  fate  in 
August,  1897,  was  simply  an  extension  of  this  policy 
of  leaving  the  border  militia,  or  levies,  to  shift  for 
themselves.  As  it  involved,  however,  the  closing 
of  the  Khyber  Pass,  and  therefore  of  all  traffic 
between  Peshawar  and  Kabul,  the  loss  of  fifty 
thousand  rounds  of  ammunition,  and  the  withdrawal 
of  Captain  Barton  from  his  post  of  command,  it 
could  not  fail  to  attract  further  attention,  with 
results  that  are  now  sufficiently  well  known  and 
have  been  amply,  albeit  justly,  criticized. 

A  suggestion  has  been  made  that  the  Sikhs,  the 
hereditary  foes  of  the  Pathans,  should  be  planted 
along  the  border  in  posts  or  small  colonies,  and  that 
to  them  a  free  hand  should  be  given  to  check  Pathan 
raids.  The  suggestion  appears  to  have  attracted  no 
official  attention  ;  but  that  does  not  argue  its  im- 
practicability or  worthlessness. 

Although  the  Orakzai  lashkars  (both  Samil  and 
Gar,  so  called  after  the  two  factions  of  the  clan) 
continued  to  swarm  on  and  around  the  Samana 
range,  no  further  active  attack  was  made  by  them 
until  September  3.  They  wasted  their  time  and 
opportunities  in  petty  acts  of  destruction  or  outrage, 


122  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

or  in  mere  "  sniping "  by  day  and  by  night.  At 
daybreak  on  September  3  intelligence  reached  Fort 
Lockhart  that  a  large  force  of  the  enemy  was 
advancinof  ajTainst  Fort  Gulistan  from  the  Samana 
Suk.  Haughton  at  once  started  for  Gulistan  with 
a  small  reinforcement,  part  of  which  he  left  to 
strengthen  the  Saragarhi  post.  He  came  under 
a  heavy  fire  on  his  way,  and,  on  reaching  Gulistan, 
found  the  enemy  had  planted  their  standards  and 
established  themselves  in  force  on  the  south  and 
west  of  the  fort,  within  from  two  hundred  to  four 
hundred  yards  of  the  walls.  They  had  succeeded 
also  in  creeping  up  and  setting  fire  to  the  thorn 
abattis,  which  was  pegged  down  and  weighted  with 
stones,  a  few  yards  outside  the  hornwork.  This  fire 
had  to  be  put  out  twice  by  a  sortie  of  unarmed 
volunteers  from  the  garrison  under  a  heavy  fire 
at  very  close  range.  The  task  was  one  of  very 
great  danger,  but  it  was  done,  and  gallantly  done, 
under  cover  of  the  fire  from  the  walls.  Sunder 
Singh  and  Harma  (or  Harnam)  Singh  were  the 
two  sepoys  who  specially  distinguished  themselves 
in  putting  out  the  fire.  This  is  only  one  of  the 
many  gallant  acts  performed  by  the  36th  Sikhs 
during  the  frontier  rising  of  1897-98.  Indeed, 
that  very  evening,  after  darkness  fell,  a  second  deed 
of  daring  was  done.  The  growing  severity  of  the 
enemy's  fire  argued  increasing  numbers,  but  in  the 
dark  nothing  could  be  seen.  A  sudden  rush  was 
apprehended.  In  view  of  this  contingency  a  great 
pile  of  wood  had  been  prepared  beforehand  about 


BRAVERY  OF   THE   SIKHS.  1 23 

a  hundred  yards  outside  the  horn  work.  It  was 
decided  to  light  it.  Two  sepoys,  Wariam  Singh 
and  Gulab  Singh,  volunteered  for  this  difficult  and 
dangerous  bit  of  work.  Leaping  over  the  wall,  and 
running  almost  into  the  midst  of  the  enemy,  they 
accomplished  it  successfully,  and  got  back  without 
being  hit.*  The  Orakzais  had  by  this  time,  under 
cover  of  the  dark,  gathered  in  on  all  sides  of  the 
fort,  and  kept  up  a  heavy  fire,  accompanied  by 
shouts  and  yells  and  beating  of  tomtoms,  until 
midnight.  This  fiendish  noise  may  have  been 
intended  to  cloak  some  endeavour  to  crawl  up 
to  and  undermine  the  walls,  as  at  Charikar  in 
November,  1841.  If  so,  the  bonfire  and  the 
alertness  of  the  garrison  defeated  any  such  intent. 
When  day  (September  4)  broke,  they  had  with- 
drawn beyond  effective  rifle  range.  Later  on  they 
disappeared  altogether.  Colonel  Haughton  then 
returned  with  his  detachment  to  Fort  Lockhart. 
The  Orakzais,  seeing  this,  promptly  returned  to  the 
attack,  and  throughout  the  night  of  September  4 
kept  up  a  heavy  fire  on  the  fort  of  Gulistan.  Little 
damage,  however,  was  done,  and  the  next  day  they 
again  withdrew.  From  information  received,  it 
transpired  that  they  were  discouraged  by  their 
want  of  success,  and  their  jirgahs  decided  that, 
unless  the  Afridis  supported  them,  they  would 
not    renew   their   attacks.     Simultaneously  almost. 


*  Both  these  gallant  men  took  part  in  a  sortie,  of  which  I  shall 
speak  later,  on  September  13,  and  both  were  then  very  severely 
wounded.     Wariam  Singh  died  of  his  wounds. 


124  JOHN  H AUG H TON. 

the  Afridi  jirgahs  had  met  at  Bagh  on  September  3, 
and  decided  to  send  a  strong  force  to  co-operate 
with  the  Orakzais  in  their  attack  on  the  Samana 
forts.  Meantime  General  Yeatman-Biggs,  having 
assembled  at  Hangu  a  force  of  the  three  arms 
aggregating  about  two  thousand  five  hundred  men, 
started  on  September  7  to  carry  supplies  to  the 
Samana  forts,  which  by  this  time  were  on  half 
rations,  and  to  resist  the  attack  by  the  combined 
Orakzai  and  Afridi  lashkars  which  was  reported 
to  be  imminent.  He  reached  Fort  Lockhart  on 
the  8th,  and  camped  there,  sending  his  sappers 
and  miners  to  repair  and  strengthen  the  Gulistan 
defences.  On  the  9th  a  reconnaissance  was  made 
to  the  Samana  Suk,  and  it  was  ascertained  that  a 
strong  force  of  Orakzais  and  Afridis  had  assembled 
near  Khangarbur,  at  the  junction  of  the  Sampagha 
and  Khanki  valleys.  Twenty-nine  standards  were 
counted.  On  the  loth  further  contingents  of 
Afridis  arrived.  The  combined  Orakzai  and  Afridi 
lashkars  were  now  estimated  at  from  twenty  to 
twenty-five  thousand  men.  On  the  evening  of  the 
loth  the  sappers  and  miners  completed  their  work 
on  the  Gulistan  defences  and  rejoined  the  main 
camp  at  Fort  Lockhart.  By  the  morning  of  the 
nth  the  concentration  of  the  Orakzai-Afridi  army 
was  completed ;  and  information  reached  General 
Yeatman-Biggs  that  a  body,  some  thousands  strong, 
was  moving  eastwards  down  the  Khanki  valley. 
Apprehending  that  an  attack  was  intended  on  the 
Kohat- Hangu   road,    he   also    marched    his    force 


SECOND   ATTACK.  1 25 

eastward  along  the  crest  of  the  Samana.  After 
fiO^htinor-  a  rear-gfuard  action  towards  evening  and 
checking  the  enemy's  movement  eastwards,  General 
Yeatman- Biggs  was  obliged,  owing  to  want  of  water, 
to  make  for  Hangu,  where  his  force  arrived  late  at 
night,  and  necessarily  somewhat  exhausted  after  a 
hard  day's  work.  This  move,  unavoidable  as  it 
was,  left  the  Orakzais  and  Afridis,  who  doubled 
back  on  their  tracks,  free  to  turn  the  whole  strength 
of  their  attack  on  the  Samana  forts.  The  distri- 
bution of  the  36th  Sikhs  was  at  this  time,  approxi- 
mately, as  follows  : — * 

At  Fort  Lockhart,  168  of  all  native  ranks  under 
Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton  and  Lieutenant  Munn 
(adjutant).  At  Gulistan  (Fort  Cavagnari),  175 
native  ranks  under  Major  Des  Vceux,  with  2nd 
Lieutenant  H.  R.  E.  Pratt,  and  Surgeon-Captain 
C.  B.  Prall  as  medical  officer.  Lieutenant  A.  K. 
Blair  was  lying  dangerously  wounded  in  the  hospital. 
As  already  mentioned,  Mrs.  Des  Voeux,  her  children, 
and  their  nurse,  Teresa  McGrath,  were  also  in 
the  fort. 

Saragarhi     ...  21  Rifles 

Dhar    2)1  Rifles  under  a  native  officer 

Sangar         ...  44  Rifles       ,,  ,,  ,, 

Sartop  ...  21  Rifles 

The  Sangar  post  was  attacked  on  the  night  of 
the    iith,  and,   again,   for  twenty-four  hours   from 

*  Three  companies  of  the  regiment  were,  it  seems,  detached  in 
the  Kurram  valley. 


126  JOHN  H AUG H TON. 

13th   to    14th,    but    the    strength    of    its    position 
enabled  the  garrison  to  repel  all  attacks. 

When  day  broke  on  the  12th,  the  Orakzai- 
Afridi  "  lashkar "  was  seen  to  be  in  force  near 
Goera  on  the  east,  at  the  Samana  Suk  on  the 
west,  and  round  the  Saragarhi  post,  thus  severing 
Gulistan  from  Fort  Lockhart.  (Their  total  number 
has  been  variously  estimated  at  from  twelve  to  twenty 
thousand.)  It  was,  therefore,  no  longer  possible  for 
Colonel  Haughton  to  carry  aid  to  Saragarhi  or 
Gulistan,  as  he  had  done  twice  before.  The  enemy 
turned  the  brunt  of  their  attack  on  the  little  post  of 
Saragarhi.  Thousands  swarmed  round  it ;  other 
thousands  invaded  Gulistan ;  while  a  third  body 
of  the  enemy  cut  off  communication  with  Fort 
Lockhart.  It  was  impossible  for  either  Haughton 
or  Des  Voeux  to  venture  into  the  open  with  any  part 
of  their  small  garrisons  in  order  to  aid  the  little 
party  in  Saragarhi.  At  an  early  stage  of  the  attack 
the  Pathans  tried  to  rush  the  post,  but  were  repulsed 
with  loss.  They  then  took  shelter  behind  the  rocks, 
and  behind  folds  and  dips  of  the  ground,  and  so, 
working  their  way  under  cover  close  up  to  the  walls, 
maintained  an  incessant  fire  on  the  garrison.  When 
the  rush,  just  mentioned,  was  repulsed,  two  Pathans 
remained  behind,  crouched  in  the  dead  angle,  where 
no  fire  could  touch  them,  and  set  to  work  to  dig 
down  the  walls.  This  is  an  old  and  familiar  trick  in 
Pathan  siege  tactics.  The  garrison  inside  appeared 
to  be  quite  unaware  that  these  two  men  were  at  work 
undermining  the  wall.     Major  Des  Vceux,  who  saw 


THE   FATAL    WOODEN  DOORWAY.  1 27 

them  clearly  from  Gullstan,  endeavoured  to  warn  the 
garrison  by  signal,  but  was  seemingly  not  successful. 
Colonel  Haughton,  though  Fort  Lockhart  was  not 
actually  attacked,  could  do  little  more  than  caution 
Saragarhi  by  signal  not  to  waste  the  ammunition,  of 
which  they  had  four  hundred  rounds  per  man. 
About  midday  he  sent  Lieutenant  Munn  with  a 
small  party  of  the  Royal  Irish  Regiment  (men  who 
had  been  left  sick  in  the  hospital  by  General 
Yeatman- Biggs),  armed  with  Lee-Metford  rifles, 
to  a  point  a  short  distance  from  Fort  Lockhart  to 
try  and  create  a  diversion  by  long-range  volleys. 
This  had  no  effect.  While  the  two  men  in  the 
dead  angle  were  steadily  undermining  the  wall, 
the  bulk  of  the  assailants  kept  the  attention  of 
the  garrison  fully  occupied.  Such  an  incessant  fire 
from  a  range  of  a  few  yards  was  kept  up  on  the 
parapet  that  the  defenders  scarce  dare  show  them- 
selves. Under  cover  of  this  fire  repeated  attempts 
were  made  to  set  fire  to  and  force  the  wooden 
doorway.* 

*  Some  say  the  door  was  of  wood  only,  others  of  wood  studded 
with  iron.  When  the  news  of  the  gallant  defence  and  fall  of  Saragarhi 
post  reached  India,  and  when  it  became  known  that  a  wooden  door 
and  want  of  adequate  flank  defence  had  been  the  weak  points  that 
caused  its  fall,  there  was,  and  rightly,  a  strong  feeling  of  indignation 
against  the  engineering  negligence  or  incompetence  that  was  respon- 
sible for  the  loss  of  the  post  and  its  gallant  defenders.  The  door  of 
the  tower  that  defends  the  railway  station  at  Chaman  was  found  in 
the  same  state  in  1897.  Arrangements  were  then  made  to  have  that 
rectified.  The  selection  of  good  sites  for  defensible  posts  on  the 
north-west  frontier  of  India  is  a  task  of  great  difficulty.  To  get  a  spot 
which  is  not  commanded  within  rifle  range,  and  which  contains 
within  it,  or  close  under  its  walls,  a  good  water-supply,  is  no  easy 
matter.  For  careless  construction  there  is  no  excuse.  The  men  who 
put  up  wooden  doorways  ought  to  be  left  to  defend  them. 


128  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

About  three  in  the  afternoon  the  signaller  noti- 
fied that  ammunition  was  running  short.  Haughton 
then  determined  to  make  a  final  effort  to  help  them. 
Leaving  seventy  or  eighty  men  of  his  regiment 
behind  under  the  command  of  Lieutenant  Lillie, 
Royal  Irish  Regiment  (left  behind  sick),  and  Second- 
Lieutenant  Haslam  (R.E.),  he,  with  Lieutenant 
Munn  and  ninety  rifles  (Sikhs),  advanced  cautiously 
towards  Sarag^arhi.  When  he  had  advanced  a 
thousand  yards  or  so,  he  saw  the  enemy  swarm 
over  the  walls  and  in  at  the  doorway,  and  knew 
that  all  was  over.  What  had  happened  had  been 
more  clearly  apparent  to  the  garrison  at  Gulistan. 
Soon  after  three  o'clock  the  wall  at  the  dead  angle 
was  seen  to  fall  in,  leaving  a  large  breach.  Half 
an  hour  later  the  Pathans  rushed  the  breach,  at  the 
same  time  forcing  in  the  wooden  door,  which  had 
been  riddled  and  torn  by  rifle-fire.  The  Sikh 
sepoys  fought  to  the  bitter  end.  They  knew  that 
the  traditions  of  Sikh  and  Pathan  warranted  neither 
the  giving  nor  receiving  of  quarter.  One  sepoy 
secured  the  guard-room  door  inside,  and  used  his 
rifle  till  he  was  burnt  to  death.  His  foes  admit  that 
he  accounted  for  twenty  of  them  before  his  end 
came.  The  capture  of  Saragarhi  is  said  to  have 
cost  the  Afridi-Orakzai  Alliance  from  one  hundred 
and  eighty  to  two  hundred  lives.  The  Pathans, 
having  destroyed  the  walls  of  the  post  and  set  fire 
to  the  buildings,  left  it. 

Such   are  the   bare    facts   of  the   defence   and 
capture  of  Saragarhi.     We  tell  and  read  them  now 


CAPTURE    OF  SARAGARHI.  1 29 

in  cold  blood.  Let  us  try  and  picture  to  ourselves 
for  one  moment  the  actual  scene  on  that  12th  of 
September.  Inside  that  little  post  twenty-one  men 
fighting  unflinchingly  for  their  lives  ;  outside  thou- 
sands of  Pathans  working  relentlessly  to  take  the 
hated  Sikh  blood  ;  at  Gulistan,  two  miles  off,  the 
garrison,  themselves  invested  and  powerless  to  help, 
noting,  with  an  intensity  of  feeling  which  we  can 
hardly  realize,  that  slow  but  steady  demolition  of  the 
"dead  angle"  wall;  and  lastly.  Colonel  Haughton 
and  his  men  at  Fort  Lockhart  watching  the  scene 
with  a  terrible  anxiety,  and  doing  what  was  possible, 
in  the  face  of  intervening  thousands  of  Pathans,  to 
create  a  diversion  in  favour  of  the  gallant  few  in 
Saragarhi.  Nothing  evidently  was  known  at  Fort 
Lockhart  of  the  two  men  who  were  undermining 
the  wall.  When  the  imminence  of  danger  seemed 
to  justify  the  effort,  however  perilous,  to  aid  the 
little  garrison.  Colonel  Haughton  pushed  with  his 
men  to  a  distance  of  a  thousand  yards  or  more  from 
Fort  Lockhart.  The  risk  of  being  cut  off  was 
great.  The  Pathans  were  threatening  his  right 
flank,  and  could  only  be  checked  by  the  fire  from 
Fort  Lockhart  and  by  a  flanking  party  detached  to 
cover  his  right.  How  far  he  could  have  carried  his 
emprise,  had  Saragarhi  continued  to  hold  out,  or  how 
it  would  have  ended,  we  know  not.  He  was  the 
last  man  to  leave  a  comrade  unaided,  if  aid  were 
possible.  He  was,  however,  destined  to  die,  not  in 
the  relief  of  Saragarhi,  but  in  covering  the  retreat  at 
Shinkamar.     We  may  sorrow  for  the   sacrifice  of 

K 


130  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

these  brave  soldiers,  but  the  Sikh  nation,  while  it 
lasts,  will  never  forget  the  glory  of  the  defence.  A 
monument  on  the  Samana  spur  near  Fort  Lockhart, 
and  a  cairn  on  the  site  of  the  Saragarhi  post,  com- 
memorate the  gallantry  of  the  defenders.  A  sub- 
scription, raised  through  the  instrumentality  of  the 
Pioneer,  produced  a  sum  of  about  ^2000,  which 
has  been  utilized  for  the  benefit  of  their  wives  and 
families. 

We  must  now  turn  our  attention  to  Fort  Gulis- 
tan.  In  the  forenoon,  the  enemy  advancing  from 
Samana  Suk  occupied  Picquet  Hill  and  other  com- 
manding points  as  they  had  done  before.  Major 
Des  Voeux,  seeing  this,  promptly  manned  the  de- 
fences. The  troops,  once  posted,  remained  at  their 
posts  without  relief  or  rest  for  more  than  fifty  hours. 
There  was  scarce  time  even  to  partake  of  food,  so 
pressing  and  incessant  was  the  enemy's  attack. 
Major  Des  Voeux  had  taken  the  precaution  to  store 
inside  the  fort  all  the  water  he  could  ;  but  that  all 
did  not  suffice  for  the  wants  of  the  garrison  ;  * 
especially  when  some  forty  wounded  men  had 
wounds  to  be  dressed  and  thirst  to  be  assuaged. 
At  about  4  p.m.  on  September  12,  when  Saragarhi 
had  fallen,  the  attack  on  Gulistan  began  in  earnest. 
The  construction  of  that  fort  had  its   weak  points 

*  It  was  the  same  story  at  Charikar  in  1S41  ;  at  Dhulipgarh,  held 
for  Reynell  Taylor  by  Fateh  Khan  Tiwana  in  1848  ;  and,  in  a  way, 
at  Chitral  in  1895 — the  same  story  of  which  any  frontier  officer  will 
have  had  some  experience.  No  fort  is  safe  unless  it  contains  its  own 
water-supply  ;  and  yet  posts  are  again  and  again  established,  the 
water-supply  of  which  is  outside  the  fort,  and  often  not  even  under 
cover  of  the  fire  of  the  garrison. 


THE   RUINS   OF   SAKAGARHI. 
(/■'rom  photogroplis  by  Lieut. -Colonel  John  Ihtti^htou.) 


SORTIE   FROM  GULISTAN.  13I 

like  that  of  Saragarhi.  The  special  weak  points 
were  the  angles  of  each  bastion.  Major  Des  Voeux, 
forewarned,  took  the  precaution  of  building  a  breast- 
work of  ration  bags  right  across  the  interior  of  the 
vulnerable  angles,  of  posting  a  sentry  there  to  listen 
for  the  sounds  of  mining,  and  of  telling  off  a  special 
party  of  ten  men  for  defence,  in  case  the  enemy 
should  penetrate  the  outer  wall.  Throughout  the 
night  of  the  12th  the  Pathans  kept  up  a  steady  fire 
on  the  fort ;  and  when  the  1 3th  of  September  dawned, 
it  was  seen  that  they  had  crept  up  within  twenty 
yards  of  the  walls,  and,  taking  advantage  of  every 
bank  and  fold  of  the  ground,  built  up  shelters  for 
themselves  of  stones  and  rocks  (Indice,  "sangar"), 
and  planted  their  standards  on  this  line  of  sangars. 
Major  Des  Voeux  decided  that  the  most  effective 
blow  could  be  dealt  by  a  sudden  sortie.  A  standard 
planted  opposite  to  and  twenty  yards  from  the 
north-west  angle  of  the  hornwork  was  fixed  on  as 
the  point  for  attack.  Havildar  Kala  Singh  with 
his  section,  seventeen  men  in  all,  volunteered  for  the 
work.  It  was  then  about  eight  o'clock.  A  heavy 
fire  was  opened  from  the  fort's  hornwork  on  the 
Pathan  sangars,  while  Kala  Singh  and  his  men, 
slipping  out  of  the  position  on  the  south  side,  crept 
along  that  face  to  the  south-west  corner,  and  then 
with  fixed  bayonets  charged  the  sangar.  The  Pathan 
fire,  however,  checked  them,  and  they  were  fain  to 
throw  themselves  on  their  faces.  Instantly,  witliout 
orders,  Havildar  Sunder  Sing  and  eleven  other  men 
leapt  over  the  walls  to  their  support,  and,  carrying 


132  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

the  first  party  with  them,  charged  the  sangar,  drove 
out  the  Pathans,  captured  three  standards,  and  amid 
the  ringing  cheers  of  their  comrades  rescaled  the 
hornwork  walls.  It  was  seen  at  once,  however,  that 
two  men  were  missing.  Instantly  three  sepoys  were 
over  the  wall  again,  and,  before  the  Pathans  could 
recover  from  their  surprise  and  alarm,  had  brought 
in  the  missing  men,  both  gravely  wounded.  Thirteen 
of  the  twenty-nine  men  were  more  or  less  severely 
wounded  ;  three,  as  it  proved,  mortally.  The  effect 
produced  well  repaid  the  loss.  It  put  heart  into  the 
defenders  and  cowed  the  assailants.  The  garrison 
stood  to  their  posts  steadily  and  manfully,  and  every 
wounded  man  fit  to  stand  and  shoot  returned  to 
duty  as  soon  as  his  wound  had  been  dressed.  Some 
did  not  even  report  their  wounds  till  the  relieving 
force  arrived.  The  enemy  kept  up  a  close  invest- 
ment and  heavy  fire,  but  dared  not  make  an  assault. 
Just  before  dark  field-guns  were  seen  to  be  firing  in 
the  Miranzai  valley  from  the  direction  of  Doaba, 
and  a  message  arrived  from  General  Yeatman- 
BisfSfS*  that  he  and  his  force  would  relieve  them 
next  day.  The  position  remained  the  same  through- 
out the  night.     Want  of  food,  water,  and  rest  were 

*  On  receipt  of  intelligence  that  Gulistan  was  hard  pressed, 
General  Yeatman-Biggs  at  once  sent  off  a  signalling  party  of  the  3rd 
Bengal  Cavalry  towards  Doaba,  to  inform  Gulistan  that  relief  would 
reach  them  on  the  14th  ;  also  four  guns,  with  five  squadrons  as  escort, 
along  the  Shinawari  road,  with  orders  to  make  a  diversion  by  opening 
fire  from  the  Miranzai  valley  below,  on  the  heights  near  Gulistan. 
This  fire  not  only  encouraged  the  garrison,  but  persuaded  the  Pathans 
that  General  Yeatman-Biggs's  advance  and  relief  would  be  by  Doaba, 
His  move  via  Sangar  and  Fort  Lockhart  thus  took  them  by  surprise. 


lOUT   GULISTAN,    SHOWING   SORTIE   GATE   THROUGH   WHICH    HAVILDAR 
KALA  SINGH  LED  HIS  SORTIE. 


GL'I.I>1AN,     I'K    EOKT    CAVAI.NAKI. 


RELIEF  OF  GULISTAN.  1 33 

beginning  to  tell  on  the  garrison,  but  no  one  dreamt 
of  losing  heart.  Major  Des  Voeux  sent  off  a  letter 
to  assure  General  Yeatman- Biggs  that  his  garrison 
was  able  to  hold  out,  but  the  message  miscarried. 
Daybreak  on  the  14th  showed  a  force  of  Orakzais 
and  Afridis,  estimated  at  ten  or  twelve  thousand, 
investing  the  fort,  crowning  Picquet  Hill  and  the 
Saragarhi  heights,  and  swarming  on  Samana  Suk. 
An  hour  or  two  later  the  sound  of  field-guns  was 
again  heard,  and  by  9  or  10  a.m.  shells  were  seen 
bursting  over  the  heights  near  Saragarhi.  The 
enemy  located  there  promptly  retreated  down  the 
northern  slopes  of  the  Samana  to  the  Khanki  valley. 
As  the  relieving  force  drew  nearer  and  reached  the 
Saragarhi  heights,  the  Pathans  drew  off  from  Gulis- 
tan  towards  the  Samana  Suk.  Then  it  was  that 
Major  Des  Voeux  and  his  men  let  them  have  the 
full  effect  of  their  rifle-fire  from  the  fort.  Many 
were  seen  to  fall  as  they  disappeared  westward 
beyond  the  Samana  Suk.  The  relieving  force 
reached  Gulistan  at  i  p.m.  It  is  estimated 
(officially)  that  the  Orakzais  and  Afridis  lost  four 
hundred  killed  and  six  hundred  wounded  in  their 
unsuccessful  attack  on  the  Samana  forts.  Of  the 
36th  Sikhs,  twenty-one  men  were  killed  at  Sara- 
garhi ;  while  at  Gulistan  two  were  killed  and  thirty- 
nine  wounded,  of  whom  eight  dangerously.  One 
officer  (Lieutenant  Blair)  was  dangerously  wounded. 
Havildar  Kala  Sing,  who  led  the  sortie,  was  one  of 
those  who  succumbed  to  his  wounds.  Major  Des 
Voeux's  wife  and  children  escaped  unhurt.     Teresa 


134  JOHN  HAUGJITON. 

McGrath,  their  nurse,  showed  great  courage  and 
fortitude,  attending  to  the  wounded,  and  helping  in 
any  way  she  could  without  thought  for  herself. 
Her  Majesty  afterwards  conferred  upon  her  the 
Royal  Red  Cross.  I  will  conclude  by  quoting  the 
words  of  an  eye-witness,  one  of  the  relieving  force — 

"  Fort  Gulistan  was  safe,  and  with  lightened  heart  some 
of  us  pushed  on.  By  2  p.m.  we  were  within  its  walls. 
Blackened  with  gunpowder,  worn  out  with  forty-eight 
hours  *  of  continuous  toil  and  stress,  many  bandaged  and 
blood-stained,  the  garrison  still  preserved  a  brave  front. 
Drawn  up  at  the  gateway  were  the  survivors  of  the  sortie, 
with  the  three  standards  they  had  captured.  Major  Des 
Voeux,  who  had  his  anxieties  doubly  intensified  by  the 
presence  of  his  family,  had  been  the  life  and  soul  of  the 
defence,  guarding  against  every  danger,  and  showing  a  fine 
example  of  cheerfulness  and  steadfastness  to  all.  Lieu- 
tenant Pratt,  an  officer  of  a  year's  standing,  had  ably 
seconded  him,  and  Surgeon-Captain  Prall  had  untiringly 
tended  the  wounded  under  heavy  fire,  helped  by  Miss 
Teresa  McGrath,  Mrs.  Des  Voeux's  maid,  who  amid  the 
flying  bullets  could  be  seen  here  bathing  a  wounded  sepoy's 
head  and  there  tying  up  another's  arm  till  the  doctor  could 
come.  Last,  but  not  least,  every  sepoy  of  this  gallant 
band  did  his  duty,  and  at  times  almost  more  than  his  duty, 
in  a  way  worthy  of  the  proud  name  of  Sikh." 

Regarding  the  movement  of  the  relief  force,  it 

*  They  were  under  arms  from  9  a.m.  on  the  12th  to  i  p.m.  on 
the  14th  ;  in  all,  fifty-two  hours.  "  One  of  the  grandest  feats  of  arms 
in  the  South  African  War  was  the  defence  of  Jammersberg  Drift, 
where  seventeen  hundred  men  of  the  Colonial  Division  kept  eight 
thousand  of  the  enemy  at  bay  for  seventeen  days,  every  man  staying 
at  his  post  in  the  trenches,  without  warm  meals  for  days  on  end  and 
up  to  their  knees  in  water." — General  Brabant's  speech  at  Cape 
Town,  July,  1900. 


A    GALLANT  GARRISON.  1 35 

suffices  to  say  that  General  Yeatman- Biggs,  with 
eighteen  hundred  infantry  and  four  guns,  left  Hangu 
at  midnight  on  September  13,  and  by  eight  next 
morning  had  driven  the  Pathans  off  the  Gogra 
Spur,  and  relieved  the  Dhar  and  Sangar  posts, 
which  were  only  less  hard  pressed  than  Gulistan. 
The  orarrison  of  Sansfar  had  also  made  a  sortie  and 
captured  a  standard,  which  they  proudly  displayed 
to  the  column  of  relief  as  it  passed.  As  the  advance 
guard  of  General  Yeatman-Biggs's  force  approached, 
the  garrison  of  Sangar  and  that  of  Fort  Lockhart, 
under  Colonel  Haughton,  sallied  forth  and  opened 
fire  on  the  enemy  retreating  to  the  Khanki  valley. 
By  10  a.m.  Fort  Lockhart  was  reached.  Colonel 
Haughton  and  his  men  then  joined  in  the  movement 
to  relieve  Gulistan.  The  heiofhts  of  Saraofarhi  were 
still  held  by  some  thousands  of  the  enemy,  and  it 
was  not  till  they  were  driven  off  and  those  heights 
gained  by  our  own  troops  that  it  was  known  for 
certain  that  Gulistan  was  still  safe.  The  2nd  Pan- 
jab  Infantry  and  Colonel  Haughton's  Sikhs  hurried 
on  to  attack  the  thousands  of  Pathans  who  still 
swarmed  round  Gulistan.  They,  however,  gave 
our  troops  no  chance  of  closing  with  them.  General 
Yeatman-Biggs  and  his  force  camped  that  night 
near  Fort  Lockhart,  the  2nd  Panjab  Infantry  and 
two  guns  being  left  to  protect  Gulistan.  On  the 
15th  and  following  days  fresh-water  tanks  were  dug 
on  the  Samana,  and  the  roads  and  telegraph  lines 
repaired.  Hostilities,  however,  were  not  destined 
to  be  resumed  there.    On  the  i6th  a  reconnaissance 


136  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

was  made  beyond  the  Samana  Suk  to  within  a  mile 
of  Karappa  in  the  Khanki  valley.  Everything 
seen  and  heard  indicated  that  the  Afridi-Orakzai 
"  lashkar  "  had,  for  the  time  being,  dispersed. 

The    followinof     is    Colonel     Hauo;hton's    own 
account  written  to  his  wife.     It  is  full  of  interest. 

"Fort  Lockhart,  September  13,  1S97. 
"  Yesterday  was  a  terrible  day,  for  I  saw  twenty-one  of 
our  gallant  men  slaughtered  at  Saragarhi,  and  was  unable 
to  do  anything  to  prevent  it.  On  the  nth  great  numbers 
of  the  enemy  were  seen  going  off  in  the  direction  of  Hangu  ; 
and  the  General,  being  fearful  for  the  safety  of  the  small 
camp  there,  went  off  with  his  force  in  the  evening  to  save 
Hangu.  His  force  went  down  by  the  Saifuldarra  road,  or, 
rather,  along  the  hills  that  way.  They  were  engaged  with 
the  enemy  from  10  p.m.  to  4.30  the  next  morning  ;  we 
could  see  the  fight  going  on,  but  could  do  nothing,  I  hear 
we  had  only  about  two  or  three  killed,  and  the  enemy  had 
fifteen  or  sixteen.  The  situation  at  9  a.m.  on  the  12th 
was  as  follows.  The  enemy  were  in  great  force  on  the  next 
hill  beyond  Sangar  (where  there  used  to  be  a  police  post 
called  Gogra).  Another  force,  numbering  many  thousands, 
appeared  on  the  hills  at  Saragarhi  (that  is,  between  this 
and  Gulistan),  and  there  were  a  lot  more  between  here  and 
Saragarhi,  below  the  crests  of  the  hills.  They  simply 
swarmed  on  the  hills  near  Saragarhi,  which  post  they 
surrounded  at  a  short  distance,  and  kept  firing  at.  At 
twelve  o'clock  Saragarhi  signalled  that  they  had  one  sepoy 
killed  and  one  Naik  wounded,  and  three  rifles  broken  by 
the  enemy's  bullets.  Mr.  Munn  took  out  twelve  men  of  the 
Royal  Irish  (who  had  been  left  here  sick  and  as  signallers), 
and  tried  to  fire  long-range  volleys  at  the  enemy,  who 
were  visible  from  here,  though  sheltered  by  rocks  from  the 


HAUGHTON'S   OWN  ACCOUNT.  1 37 

Saragarhi  fort.  We  saw  the  enemy  make  at  least  two 
assaults  on  the  post,  but  they  were  driven  back.  At  three 
o'clock  I  came  to  the  determination,  at  all  costs,  to  try  and 
make  some  diversion  ;  so,  as  soon  as  possible  afterwards, 
Mr.  Munn  and  I  with  ninety-eight  rifles  went  out,  leaving 
seventy-three  men  to  defend  Fort  Lockhart.  We  had  to 
go  very  cautiously,  as  our  spies  reported  a  strong  force  of 
Afridis  below  the  hills,  to  the  right  of  the  road  between  this 
and  Saragarhi.  We  had  only  gone  about  three-quarters  of 
a  mile  when  we  saw  Saragarhi  taken  by  the  enemy.  Of 
course  it  is  difficult  to  say  what  occurred,  but  from  our  own 
observations  and  from  reports,  it  seems  that  the  enemy 
managed  to  break  down  the  door  of  the  post  (a  wooden 
one — a  fearful  mistake),  and  then  our  poor  men  ran  down 
from  the  parapet  to  defend  the  doorway. 

"September  15,  1897. 
"  I  was  interrupted  and  had  to  stop.  I  am  not  sure 
whether  the  above  is  quite  correct — that  is,  whether  the 
door  was  broken  in  or  not ;  but  Major  Des  Vceux,  who  was 
surrounded  at  Gulistan,  saw  the  Pathans  at  Saragarhi 
making  a  hole  in  a  dead  angle  in  the  wall.  They  got  in  there, 
and  our  men  ran  down  to  defend  the  hole,  and  the  enemy 
immediately  swarmed  over  the  walls.  The  end  was  not 
long,  though  it  is  said  that  one  poor  fellow  defended  him- 
self in  the  guard-room  and  shot  twenty  of  the  enemy  inside 
the  post.  The  brutes  then  set  the  place  on  fire.  Mean- 
while Gulistan  was  being  attacked,  and,  after  the  fall  of 
Saragarhi,  its  captors  went  off  to  help  the  Pathans  at  Gulis- 
tan, leaving  some  thousands  at  Saragarhi,  to  prevent  succour 
going  to  Gulistan.  They  attacked  all  that  day  and  night. 
The  next  morning  things  were  very  critical,  and  Major  Des 
Vceux  gave  leave  to  a  tlavildar  and  sixteen  men,  who  had 
volunteered,  to  make  a  sortie.  These  gallant  fellows  went 
out  of  the  hornwork  gate,  ran  along  outside  the  hornwork 


138  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

and  attacked  a  party  of  the  enemy  who  had  planted  their 
standards  under  a  crest  of  the  hill,  only  about  twenty  yards 
beyond  the  end  of  the  hornwork.  They  were  having  a  bad 
time  of  it,  when  another  Havildar  and  eleven  men  got  over 
the  end  of  the  hornwork  and  went  to  their  aid.  This 
turned  the  scale,  and  the  gallant  little  party  drove  the 
enemy  back  at  this  point  and  took  three  of  their  standards. 
Out  of  the  seventeen  who  first  went  out,  eleven  were 
wounded,  as  well  as  several  of  the  second  party.  When 
they  got  back  they  found  that  a  wounded  man  was  left 
behind,  and  they  again  went  out  and  brought  him  in. 
Nothing  could  have  been  more  gallant.  I  regret  to  say 
that  of  the  two  Havildars  one  is  already  dead,  and  the 
other,  I  fear,  cannot  live.  That  sortie  had  a  wonderfully 
depressing  effect  on  the  enemy,  and  a  splendid  effect  on  all 
our  men.  No  assistance  could  come  to  Gulistan  for  another 
twenty-four  hours,  and  of  course  it  was  a  fearfully  anxious 
time  for  us  at  Fort  Lockhart.  It  is  impossible  to  describe 
what  an  anxious  time  it  must  have  been  for  Major  Des 
Voeux. 

"  The  General  sent  a  field-battery  on  the  evening  of  the 
13th  to  the  foot  of  the  hill.  Of  course  it  could  not  get  up, 
but  it  sent  some  shells  pretty  near  the  enemy,  which,  though 
they  may  not  have  done  much  harm,  had  a  good  moral 
effect.  During  all  that  night  I  listened  anxiously,  and  was 
very  thankful  whenever  I  heard  a  shot  from  Gulistan.  We, 
that  night  and  the  night  before,  had  a  few  shots  fired  into 
us,  but  it  was  only  what  is  commonly  called  '  sniping.' 

''September  16,  1897. 
"  However,  it  had  this  bad  effect:  I  had  intended  starting 
off  at  3.30  a.m.,  with  every  man  I  could  spare,  to  go  out 
and  meet  the  General's  force,  and  fire  into  the  rear  of  the 
enemy,  whom  he  would  be  attacking  in  front.  Taking  the 
sniping  parties  into  consideration,  and  that  the  enemy  were 


STATE   OF  SARAGARHI  POST.  1 39 

in  thousands  at  Saragarhi,  and  possibly  nearer,  which  meant 
that  they  would  at  any  rate  be  nearer  Fort  Lockhart  than 
I  should  be  when  I  went  out  to  meet  the  general,  I  gave 
up  the  plan  for  the  time.  However,  at  about  seven  o'clock 
Mr.  Munn,  with  thirty  of  our  men  and  about  a  dozen  of 
the  Royal  Irish,  went  out  and  got  down  to  a  bit  of  a  hill 
below  Sangar,  where  we  were  able  to  get  some  good  though 
long-range  volleys  into  the  enemy  as  they  retired  before 
the  General.  They  did  not  make  much  resistance  directly 
they  heard  the  guns.  I  cannot  say  what  damage  our  volleys 
did  to  them,  as  they  were  so  scattered  about  over  the  hill- 
side, but  we  could  see  our  bullets  going  all  in  among  them 
and  knocking  up  the  dust.  About  those  same  guns  (four 
of  Captain  Parker's  Mountain  Battery),  they  had  gone  up 
the  Kurram  with  Colonel  Richardson's  column,  but  when 
the  General  found  they  were  more  wanted  here  than  there, 
they  marched  back  seventy-two  miles  in  seventy  hours  ; 
then,  after  a  day's  rest,  they  came  on  with  the  General  from 
Hangu  to  Gulistan.  Well,  to  continue :  as  soon  as  the 
enemy  had  fled  from  their  position  beyond  Sangar,  the 
General  said  he  must  push  on  hard  to  Gulistan.  So  we 
with  our  {q^  men  raced  back  to  Fort  Lockhart,  got  all  the 
men  we  had  left  there  out,  and,  without  asking  permission, 
stuck  ourselves  at  the  head  of  the  General's  force.  The 
enemy  were  pretty  strong  at  Sangar,  and  we  thought  they 
would  fight  ;  so,  unfortunately  as  it  turned  out,  the  General 
determined  to  shell  the  place  before  the  infantry  advanced. 
Consequently  the  enemy  disappeared  behind  the  ridge.  We 
thought  they  would  wait  there  till  the  advance  of  our  own 
infantry  prevented  the  guns  firing,  and  would  then  jump  up 
and  give  us  a  busy  time.  However,  when  the  36th  and 
2nd  Panjab  Infantry  advanced  over  the  hill  there  was  not 
a  man  left.  Poor  Saragarhi  was  absolutely  a  heap  of 
stones,  but  amongst  the  ruins  we  could  distinguish  the  re- 
mains of  our  poor  fellows,  hacked  to  pieces  by  these  fiends. 


140  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Then,  when  wc  got  beyond  the  Saragarhi  heights  and  could 
see  Gulistan,  we  saw  the  enemy  as  thick  as  peas  round  it  ; 
but  they  bolted  like  French  partridges  as  soon  as  we 
showed  our  noses  a  mile  and  a  half  off,  and,  unfortunately, 
it  was  a  long  time  before  the  guns  could  get  up.  When 
they  did  get  up  there  were  very  few  of  the  enemy  left 
within  range  ;  and  though  the  guns  opened  a  pretty  accurate 
fire,  I  don't  fancy  the  enemy  could  have  suffered  much. 
We  found  our  people  at  Gulistan  very  cheery.  The  General 
is  awfully  pleased  with  all  our  men  ;  I  think  they  have  just 
done  splendidly.  Mrs,  Des  Voeux  is  wonderful ;  she  had 
had  pretty  high  fever,  but  the  morning  of  our  arrival  her 
temperature  was  normal.  She  was  very  cheerful,  and  looked 
wonderfully  well.  Teresa  has  just  been  splendid,*  nursing 
the  wounded,  etc. 

"  I  am  sorry  to  say,  out  of  the  garrison  of  1 2 1  there  were 
forty-one  wounded  (not  counting  those  wounded  before), 
many  of  them  very  severely.  Several  have  since  died,  and 
I  fear  more  will  die.  Dr.  Prall  worked  like  a  horse,  or  like 
a  whole  team  of  horses.  Major  Des  Voeux  reports  that 
Mr.  Pratt  did  splendidly.  I  hope  he  and  Major  Des  Voeux 
and  Dr.  Prall  will  be  well  rewarded." 

*  Extract  from  letter  dated  September  5,  1S97 — 

"  Fort  Lockhart. 
"  Teresa  has  been  simply  splendid,  looking  after  the  children  and 
baking  bread  by  day  and  looking  after  Mr.  Blair  at  night,  besides 
superintending  food  for  both  patients.  She  has  been  as  plucky  and 
cheery  as  possible,  and  on  more  than  one  occasion  ran  down,  under 
fire,  from  the  fort  to  the  hornwork  to  get  things  wanted." 


THK    SURVIVORS   Ol'   THE   SORTIE    PARTIES    AT    GULISTAN. 

{From photographs  by  Lieut. -Cokncl  John  //aughtoii.) 


(     141     ) 


CHAPTER   VII. 

RAISING    THE    "  PARDAH  "    OF   TIRAH. 

"  'Tis  well  in  peril's  darkest  hour  to  find, 
Prompt  for  each  turn  of  fate,  some  master-mind, 
Safe  in  success,  in  danger  undismayed, 
Who    .     .     . 

Rallies  the  broken  ranks  with  skilful  hand, 
And  whilst  one  file  remains,  shall  still  command." 

"  Ca7ibui;'  by  Zeta. 

From  the  "sturm  und  drang"  of  the  first  half  of 
September  on  the  Samana,  Colonel  Haughton  and 
his  regiment  passed  to  a  month  of  comparative 
quiet,  varied  only  by  the  preparation  necessary 
for  the  expedition  into  Tirah.  On  October  17 
Sir  William  Lockhart's  **  Orders "  directed  that 
"on  October  21a  column  under  Colonel  Chaytor, 
composed  of  the  Northampton  regiment,  the  36th 
Sikhs,  and  No.  9  Mountain  Battery  Royal  Artillery, 
should  move  from  Samana  to  the  Talai  spur,  to 
protect  the  right  flank  of  the  3rd  Brigade,  moving 
in  the  Chagru  valley."  This  order  indicates  the 
part  played  by  the  36th  Sikhs  in  the  famous 
taking  and  retaking  of  the  Dargai  heights  on 
October  18  and  20.  When  Dargai  was  being  won 
from  the  tribesmen   by  Generals  Westmacott  and 


142  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Kempster  on  the  i8th,  it  was  necessary  that  the 
Samana  forts  should  be  secured  from  attack.  On 
the  20th,  when  Kempster's  Brigade,  aided  by  the 
Gordon  Highlanders  and  3rd  Sikhs,  were  stubbornly 
forcing  their  way  to  the  Dargai  heights,  the  36th 
Sikhs  were  posted  on  the  Samana  Suk,  their  orders 
being  to  guard  the  right  flank  of  the  3rd  Brigade 
in  its  march  down  the  Karappa  defile.  The 
Northampton  regiment  and  No.  9  Mountain  Battery 
were  also  there.  Samana  Suk  is  about  on  a  level 
with  and  2500  yards  distant  from  the  Dargai  crest. 
The  fire  of  No.  9  Mountain  Battery  was  therefore 
brought  into  play  with  effect.  We  can  imagine 
with  what  intense  interest  all  on  the  Samana  Suk 
must  have  watched  the  stern  fieht  which  Generals 
Yeatman-Biggs  and  Kempster  were  waging  against 
the  tenacious  tenants  of  the  Dargai  heights.  To 
Colonel  Haughton  and  his  men,  burning  as  they 
must  have  been  to  avenge  the  butchery  of  Saragarhi, 
such  inaction  would  be  hard  to  bear.  Duty,  however, 
demanded  it.  In  a  letter  dated  "  December  i,  1897, 
Camp  Bagh,"  Colonel  Haughton  has  recorded  his 
opinion  of  the  Dargai  affair — 

"What  happened  was  this.  The  position  at  Dargai 
has  to  be  approached  by  a  narrow  path  ;  then,  after  the 
path,  comes  a  bit  of  cliff  which  gives  cover  to  rest  in. 
The  2nd  Gurkhas  were  the  first  to  go  at  it,  and  four 
officers  and  a  certain  number  of  men  got  across,  two 
officers  and  a  lot  of  men  being  killed  and  wounded.  When 
they  got  to  the  above-mentioned  shelter  they  still  had 
another  bit  to  do.     Some  of  the   Dorsets — a  section   of 


HIS  ACCOUNT  OF  D  ARC  A  I.  1 43 

sixteen  men,  I  think — then  started,  and  every  one  except 
the  officer  was  knocked  over  ;  and  there  is  no  doubt  that 
both  they  and  the  Gurkhas  then  considered  attack  on  that 
line  impossible.  Then  the  Gordons  were  sent  at  it,  and 
very  sensibly  an  arrangement  was  made  that,  when  they 
were  ready,  every  gun  (of  the  artillery)  was  to  shell  the 
ridge  from  which  the  enemy  was  doing  the  damage  for 
three  minutes,  and  that  then  the  Gordons  would  make  a 
rush.  This  was  done,  and  the  Dorsets  and  Gurkhas  kept 
up  a  tremendous  fire  on  the  crest,  whilst  the  Gordons 
made  their  rush.  By  the  time  the  Gordons  (together  with 
the  Gurkhas  who  had  got  across  alive)  commenced  to 
tackle  the  second  bit  of  path,  the  enemy  were  on  the  run, 
and  had  nearly  disappeared  by  the  time  they  got  to  the 
top.  Had  this  plan  been  followed  out  at  first  it  is  possible 
the  first  troops  might  have  done  as  the  Gordons  did.  All 
praise  to  the  Gordons,  but  I  don't  see  why  the  others, 
especially  the  Gurkhas  who  lost  more  heavily  than  any  one, 
should  be  disparaged." 

On  October  21  Colonel  Chaytor's  column,  accom- 
panied by  General  Sir  William  Lockhart  and  his 
Staff,  started  to  descend  the  Talai  spur  towards  the 
Khanki  valley.  The  description  of  the  march  given 
by  Captain  Shadwell  is  so  good  that  I  cannot  do 
better  than  quote  it. 

"The  road  was  found  to  be  fairly  good  as  far  as 
Karappa,  and  this  was  largely  owing  to  the  fact  that 
working  parties  had  greatly  improved  it  for  some  way 
down  ;  but  up  the  Talai  the  path  became  most  difficult 
till  the  Khanki  valley  was  reached  ;  it  was  little  more 
than  a  goat-track  going  down  a  very  steep  mountain  side 
through  thick  scrub  and  bushes.  The  company  of  sappers 
and  miners  had  to  be  busily  at  work  cutting  it  away  and 


144  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

removing  boulders  in  order  to  allow  the  transport  animals, 
which  were  following,  to  get  along  without  their  loads  being 
brushed  off.  The  column  was  a  very  small  one  ;  all  the 
baggage  was  on  a  reduced  scale,  and  what  little  resistance 
there  was  on  reaching  the  neighbourhood  of  Karappa,  was 
quickly  overcome  by  the  troops  of  the  main  column,  and 
did  not  in  the  least  affect  the  progress  of  the  Fort  Lock- 
hart  column.  Nevertheless  the  36th  Sikhs,  under  Lieut.- 
Colonel  Haughton,  who  were  on  rear-guard  duty,  only 
managed  to  reach  Talai,  half-way,  and  that  at  2.30  a.m. 
next  morning  (23rd).  They  did  not  reach  Camp  Karappa 
till  6.30  p.m.  the  next  evening,  having  been  actually  thirty 
hours  or  more  engaged  in  marching  a  distance  of  twelve 
miles,  and  downhill  the  whole  time.  But  this  delay  on 
the  road  was  also  due  to  the  inefficient  transport.  The 
Northampton  regiment  was  supplied  with  indifferent  mules 
and  ponies,  and  the  36th  Sikhs  only  had  donkeys ;  so, 
what  with  loads  slipping  and  animals  falling  and  blocking 
the  way,  the  pace  of  the  rear-guard  in  the  worst  parts  of 
the  road  seldom  exceeded  a  few  hundred  yards  an  hour. 
The  difficulty  of  moving  in  such  a  mountainous  country 
where  there  are  no  roads  is  enormous,  more  particularly 
when  one  transport  driver  has  to  attend  to  three  beasts. 
As  these  animals  reach  places  where  they  must  jump,  slip, 
or  scramble  down  from  one  rock  to  another,  some  accident 
is  bound  to  happen  before  long  to  the  loads,  no  matter 
how  well  they  have  been  put  on.  Frequently  it  happens 
that  there  is  no  room  to  draw  aside  from  the  so-called 
track  to  readjust  loads,  then  everything  is  stopped  ;  and 
when  there  are  about  twenty  thousand  transport  animals 
the  number  of  these  breakdowns  is  everlasting." 

This  is  an  admirable  picture  of  the  difficulties 
of  marching  in  the  often  unexplored  countries  that 
border  on  our   Indian    frontiers.     It  recalls   many 


TRANSPORT  DIFFICULTIES.  1 45 

of  my  own  experiences  in  the  Afghan  War,  on 
the  Russo-Afghan  Boundary  Commission,  in  the 
Burmese  War  (1886-88),  and  with  the  column 
which  explored  and  annexed  in  the  winter  of 
1887-SS  the  Burmese  Shan  States  (some  10,000 
square  miles)  as  far  east  as  the  Salween  river. 
I  may  add  one  feature  to  the  picture,  viz.  that  the 
•'three  beasts"  are  as  a  rule  chained  together,  a 
most  dangerous  union  in  difficult  ground.  The 
driver,  whose  intelligence  is  extremely  small,  often 
omits  to  unlink  the  chains  when  a  bad  place  has  to 
be  negotiated.  The  result  is  that  the  leading  mule 
is  pulled  violently  on  to  its  back,  or  the  rear  mule 
dragged  forcibly  forward  on  its  face  ;  or  occasionally 
that  the  entire  trio  is  carried  over  the  edge  of  the 
path.  The  Persian  muleteer  and  the  Panthay  in 
China  and  the  Shan  States  never  fasten  their  mules 
together.  The  mules  are  taught  to  follow  a  leader. 
It  is  remarkable  that,  up  to  the  present,  the  Indian 
Transport  mule  has  developed  little  or  no  aptitude 
for  marching  in  droves.  The  Transport  authorities 
fully  grasp  the  value  of  training  mules  to  accustom 
themselves  to  be  driven  and  not  led,  and,  wherever 
there  is  Transport,  efforts  are  made  to  train  the 
mules  accordingly.  In  vain.  Some  always  break 
away,  throw  their  loads  and  scamper  off  across 
country.  The  Persian  and  Panthay  mules  eschew 
these  frivolities. 

During  the  week  spent  by  the  Tirah  Field 
Force  at  Karappa  or  Khangarbur — a  trying  time, 
owing  to  the  sniping  tactics  of  the  enemy — Colonel 

L 


146  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Haughton's  regiment  took  its  share  of  picquet  and 
foraging  duties,  but  had  only  one  man  wounded. 
When  Sir  William  Lockhart  decided  to  recommence 
his  advance  on  October  28,  the  36th  Sikhs  were 
detailed  with  the  Northamptons,  under  Colonel 
Chaytor,  to  seize  a  high  hill  on  the  right  flank 
of  and  overlooking  the  route  that  had  to  be  followed 
— a  hill  which  the  enemy  had  occupied  daily  during 
the  halt  at  Karappa.  There  was,  therefore,  reason 
to  expect,  not  only  a  very  stiff  climb,  but  also  a 
hard  fight,  before  it  could  be  seized.  However, 
as  Colonel  Haughton's  own  account  will  show, 
the  enemy  were  caught  napping.  The  North- 
ampton regiment  and  36th  Sikhs  held  their  post 
all  day  and  joined  the  new  camp  at  Gandaki  in  the 
evening. 

On  October  29  the  Sampagha  pass  was  carried. 
Severe  resistance  was  expected.  Westmacott's 
Brigade  (the  4th),  to  which  the  36th  Sikhs  belonged, 
moved  in  support  of  the  2nd  or  Gaselee's  Brigade. 
During  the  attack  Westmacott  gradually  pushed 
the  36th  Sikhs,  supported  by  the  King's  Own 
Scottish  Borderers,  into  the  front  line.  The  36th 
Sikhs,  coming  abreast  of  the  Yorkshire  regiment, 
helped  to  carry  the  crest  of  the  enemy's  third 
position,  the  point  that  was  most  stubbornly  de- 
fended. Overhanging  the  crest  and  the  pathway 
were  precipitous  cliffs  held  by  the  Afridis,  who  had 
got  the  range  and  were  pouring  in  a  galling  fire. 
How  the  36th  Sikhs  drove  them  out,  let  Colonel 
Haughton  himself  tell  in  his  letter  on  October  30 


TAKING   OF  SAMPAGHA    PASS.  1 47 

from  the  Mastura  valley.     In  it  he  briefly  recounts 
the  work  of  his  regiment  on  October  28  and  29. 

"  Mastura  valley,  October  30,  1897. 

"The  papers  will  have  told  you  that  we  have  taken 
the  Sampagha  pass.  They  may  not  have  told  you  that 
the  enemy's  final  position  above  the  pass  was  taken  by 
the  36th  Sikhs.  But  of  that  more  anon.  I  forget  the  day 
I  despatched  my  last,  but  I  think  when  I  did  so  we  ex- 
pected a  move  the  next  day,  but  did  not  move  after  all. 
On  the  night  of  the  27th  we  got  orders  that  the  next  day 
we,  supported  by  the  Northamptons,  were  to  capture  a 
high  hill  overlooking  camp,  which  had  been  occupied  every 
day  by  the  enemy.  We  were  to  start  an  hour  before  day- 
break, so  as  to  be  ready  to  commence  the  attack  as  soon 
as  it  was  light  enough.  This  we  did,  and,  rather  fortu- 
nately for  us,  found  the  enemy  had  left  it  at  night.  It 
was  a  fearful  pull  up,  in  many  places  almost  perpendicular, 
and  had  we  been  opposed  we  should  have  had  a  stiff  job. 
When  we  got  to  the  top  the  enemy  commenced  potting 
us  from  the  opposite  hill,  distant  about  800  yards,  and 
higher  ground  than  we  were,  but  we  soon  got  under  cover 
and  commenced  to  build  sangars.  As  soon  as  we  had 
built  them  we  got  orders  for  the  36th  to  go  off  to  another 
hill.  Just  the  first  few  yards  the  enemy  potted  freely,  but 
their  fire  was  kept  down  by  the  Northamptons,  and  we 
were  soon  out  of  their  sight.  We  had  a  fearful  climb 
down  and  a  still  more  fearful  climb  up,  but  got  to  our 
place  at  last.  After  we  had  been  there  some  time,  much 
to  our  delight  orders  came  that  we  were  to  come  down  to 
the  new  camp  and  the  Northamptons  occupy  our  place. 
We  got  to  camp  at  4.30,  having  had  nothing  but  a  bit  of 
chocolate  and  a  biscuit  since  4.30  a.m. 

"  October  29. — We  had  a  fearfully  hard  day  but  not  much 


148  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

fighting.*  .  .  .  General  Westmacott  called  me  up  and 
told  mc  to  attack  the  position  covered  by  fire  from  the 
King's  Own  Scottish  Borderers  and  the  guns.  I  got  a 
couple  of  companies  together  and  we  made  a  rush  to  some 
rocks  about  fifty  yards  and  then  on  another  fifty  yards. 
Just  that  first  hundred  yards  the  enemy  poured  in  a  pretty 
hot  fire,  but  we  had  only  one  man  killed  f  and  three 
wounded,  thanks  to  the  splendid  fire  kept  up  by  the  King's 
Own  Scottish  Borderers.  After  that  there  was  hardly  a 
shot  fired  at  us,  but  it  was  a  fearful  pull  up,  and  we  were 
all  dead  beat  by  the  time  we  got  to  the  top.  Captain 
Searle  and  I  were  the  only  officers  with  the  leading  com- 
panies. I  believe  I  was  the  first  man  of  the  Army  to  see 
into  this  valley.  I  don't  mean  to  say  that  other  troops 
hadn't  fighting,  and  some  of  them  a  good  deal  more  than 
we  did — still  the  fact  remains  that  we  were  the  first  in  and 
over  the  Sampagha  pass." 

The  Tirah  Field  Force  camped  that  night  in 
the  Mastura  valley  and  rested  there  the  following. 
"  Beautifully  fertile,  intersected  by  a  spring-fed 
rivulet  of  pure  vi^ater,  not  closely  vi^ooded,  yet  there 
are  many  beautiful  groves  dotted  about,  and  the 
autumn  tints  remind  one  of  England."  So  writes 
the  Times  of  hidia  correspondent  on  October  30, 
1897.  On  the  31st  the  4th  Brigade  (Westmacott) 
supported  by  the  second  and  third  (Gaselee  and 
Kempster)  left  camp  soon  after  daybreak — the  cold 
was  bitter — to  force  the  Arhanga  pass.  No  resist- 
ance worth  speaking  of  was  made,  and  before  1 1  a.m. 

*  This  describes  the  final  act  in  the  capture  of  the  Sampagha 
pass. 

t  The  sepoy  killed  is  said  to  have  been  the  tallest  man  in  the 
regiment,  taller  even  than  Colonel  Haughton  himself. 


OVER   ARHANGA    PASS    TO   MAID  AN.  1 49 

the  crest  of  the  pass  was  occupied  by  our  troops. 
Captain  C.  T.  A.  Searle  of  the  36th  Sikhs  was 
severely  wounded.  By  eventide  the  main  body  of 
Sir  WilHam  Lockhart's  force  was  encamped  in  the 
Maidan  valley  of  Tirah,  that  maiden  vale  which 
the  Afridi  boasted  had  never  before,  in  the  annals 
of  his  clan  at  least,  seen  an  invader.  Maidan  *  is 
about  6400  feet  above  the  sea  level.  The  cold 
there  in  winter  is  bitter.  At  the  end  of  October, 
however,  and  early  in  November,  though  the  nights 
are  chill  and  frosty  the  days  are  charming.  The 
rains  and  snows  had  not  yet  set  in,  which,  later 
on,  caused  such  hardship  and  trial  to  Sir  William 
Lockhart's  troops. 

*  He  who  would  read  a  good  description  of  that  valley,  will  find 
it  in  Captain  Shadwell's  "  Lockhart's  Advance  through  Tirah." 
Colonel  Hutchinson's  "  Tirah "  gives  plans  of  the  Sampagha  and 
Arhanga  passes,  and  views  of  the  Mastura  valley.  In  Mr.  Lionel 
James's  "  Frontier  War,  1897,"  are  photographs  of  the  Sampagha  and 
Arhanga  passes,  and  the  Maidan  valley  and  camp. 


150  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER   VIII. 

SARAN-SAR   AND   TSERI-KANDAO. 

"  And  that  same  season  of  our  genial  use, 
It  was  your  veiy  agony  of  strife  ; 
While  each  of  these  our  golden  moments  sees 
With  you  the  ebbing  of  some  noble  life." 

Archbishop  Trench. 

The  names  I  have  set  at  the  head  of  this  chapter 
are  those  of  two  passes  leading  from  the  camp  in 
Maidan ;  the  one  east-north-east  into  the  Zakha 
Khel  country,  the  other  east  by  south  into  the 
Waran  valley  tenanted  by  the  Aka  Khel.  "  Khel  " 
is  a  section  of  a  tribe.  The  chief  sections  of  the 
Afridi  are  Adam,  Zakha,  Kambar,  Aka,  Malikdin, 
Sipah,  and  Kuki.  "Saran-Sar"  means  "head  of 
heads  "  or  "peak  of  peaks."  "Tseri-Kandao  "  means 
"  Oak-tree  Pass,"  the  word  "  Kandao"  signifying  in 
precise  terms  the  "  top  of  the  pass." 

During  the  ten  days  that  elapsed  between  the 
arrival  of  the  force  at  Maidan  and  the  Saran-Sar 
reconnaissance  the  tribesmen  were  anything  but 
quiescent.  They  harassed  our  camp  and  troops 
whenever  opportunity  offered.  On  the  evening  of 
November  6,  Captain  E.  L.  Sullivan  of  the  36th 
Sikhs  was  shot  through  the  wrist,  and  had  to  be 


AFRIDI  TACTICS.  151 

invalided  to  India.  Captain  Sullivan  had  only 
rejoined  his  regiment  from  England  that  very  day, 
and  became  the  victim  of  a  "sniper"  before  he 
had  been  five  hours  in  camp.  On  the  morning  of 
the  same  day,  Captain  Plunkett  of  the  Manchester 
regiment,  who,  with  an  escort  of  the  36th  Sikhs, 
was  escorting  a  convoy  into  camp,  was  attacked  by 
some  two  hundred  Afridis.  The  Sikhs  drove  them 
off.     On  another  occasion, 

"  a  party  of  Afridis  crept  down  the  wooded  slopes  to  the 
west  of  the  4th  Brigade  camp,  and  attempted  to  rush  an 
outlying  picquet  of  the  36th  Sikhs,  who  were  in  one  of 
the  villages  across  the  central  nullah.  This  attempt  was 
abortive,  as  unwittingly  the  tribesmen  exposed  themselves 
to  a  flank  fire  from  a  picquet  of  the  3rd  Gurkhas,  also 
posted  across  the  nullah."  * 

These  three  cases  are  a  few  of  many  illustrative 
of  the  harrying  tactics  of  the  Afridis. 

It  is  not  my  intention  to  dwell  in  detail  on  the 
operations  carried  out  from  Maidan  prior  to  the 
Saran-Sar  reconnaissance.  I  may  be  excused,  how- 
ever, for  saying  a  few  words  about  the  mosque  at 
Bagh.  It  is  an  historic  spot,  as  being  the  place 
where  the  Afridi  elders  of  all  clans  meet  in  council. 
It  is  here  that  the  Mulla  Sayad  Akbar  preached 
the  jehad  (religious  war),  and  it  was  here  that  the 
resolution  was  taken  to  go  to  war  with  the  British 
Government  in  India.  The  mosque  itself  is  de- 
scribed as — 

*  Times  of  India  correspondent,  dated  "Tirah  Plateau,  Novem- 
ber 2,  1897." 


152  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

"  insignificant,  a  mere  oblong  hut  lying  at  the  junction 
of  three  rivulets,  under  the  lee  of  a  bare  hill,  and  shaded 
by  fifteen  or  twenty  trees.  It  has  two  walled  and  two 
open  sides.  Its  mud  roof  is  supported  by  twenty-one 
wooden  pillars,  a  few  of  which  are  crudely  carved.  On 
the  west  wall  is  a  niche  for  a  lamp,  and  a  small  altar  or 
pulpit  with  three  steps.  Some  Korans  were  found  in  it. 
The  floor  was  beaten  and  strewn  with  some  very  soft  grass, 
a  grass  which  no  one  recognized,  so  which  presumably  is 
rare.  The  two  walls  had  at  some  period  been  whitewashed 
and  rudely  decorated  with  some  black  pigment,  but  time 
had  almost  completely  obliterated  this.  On  the  north  side 
was  a  little  dark  retiring-room,  with  a  carved  door  and 
lintel ;  it  was  practically  empty.  The  entrance  to  the 
mosque  was  a  rough  hole  in  the  side  of  the  plinth-wall, 
which  was  the  foundation  of  the  whole  structure.  The 
trees  which  shaded  the  temple  were  walnut  and  Himalayan 
oak  ;  it  is  curious  to  note  that  the  mosque  did  not  lie  east 
and  west,  but  several  points  out.*  Its  dimensions  were 
eleven  by  eighteen  paces.  Such  was  the  spot  where  the 
Afridi  and  Orakzai  resolved  to  wage  war  against  the 
British  Government.  The  gunners  and  Gurkhas  ringed  the 
trees  of  the  grove."  f 

The  act  of  barbarity  mentioned  in  the  last 
sentence,  like  the  desecration  of  the  Mahdi's  tomb 
and  grave,  cannot  be  too  much  deplored.  No 
plea,  not  even  that  of  political  expediency,  can  be 
accepted  to  excuse  it.  We  w^ould  ourselves  admit 
no  such  plea  on  behalf  of  the  Mohammedans 
who  desecrated  our  graves  and  places  of  worship. 

*  In   this  Mohammedan  places  of  worship  appear    to  resemble 
Christian. 

t  Times  of  India  correspondent,  ut  supra. 


i^ 


-'  -V; 


MOSQUE   AT  EACH.      SACRILEGE.  1 53 

The  Strong  expressions  of  indignation  which  the 
treatment  of  the  Mahdi's  tomb  and  body  in  1898 
elicited  were  well  deserved.  This  minor  act  of 
sacrilege  away  in  the  wilds  of  Tirah  passed  un- 
noticed, but  it  is  none  the  less  to  be  regretted.  It 
is  an  act  to  which  we  look  back  with  anything  but 
pride  or  satisfaction. 

The  reconnaissance  to  the  Saran-Sar  pass  was 
directed  to  be  made  on  November  9,  and  entrusted 
to  General  Westmacott's  Brio-ade.  It  was  notified 
that  Sir  William  Lockhart  and  his  Staff  would 
accompany  the  force,  which  consisted  of  the  Dorset 
and  Northampton  Regiments,  the  15th  and  36th 
Sikhs,  and  No.  8  British  and  No.  5  Bombay 
Mountain  Batteries.  The  Saran-Sar  pass  leads 
from  Maidan  into  the  Bara  valley,  and  thence  to 
Peshawar.  It  is,  therefore,  a  route  of  high  im- 
portance, and  one  that  had  to  be  surveyed.  The 
distance  from  the  camp  to  the  foot  of  the  hills  was 
barely  three  miles,  but  the  country  was  hummocky 
and  intricate,  and  cut  up  by  deep  precipitous 
ravines.  Near  the  base  of  the  ascent  to  the  pass 
stood  a  conical  hill,  from  which  the  batteries  came 
into  action.  Two  spurs  and  a  series  of  ridges, 
wooded  in  parts,  lead  to  the  foot  of  a  steep  cliff, 
round  the  base  of  which  winds  the  pass  over 
the  summit  of  the  Kotal,  approximately  8650  feet 
above  sea-level.  At  11.30  a.m.  the  Northamptons, 
supported  by  the  36th  Sikhs,  had,  after  a  very 
stiff  climb  and  some  little  fighting,  occupied  the 
Kotal.       The    Bara   valley   was    not   visible    from 


154  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

the  summit,  but  Tirich  Mir  and  the  mountains  of 
Kafiristan  could  be  clearly  seen.  In  one  of  the 
Zakha  Khel  houses  a  Sikh's  quoit  and  blood- 
stained hair  were  found,  a  ghastly  relic  of  Sara- 
garhi.  By  12.45,  the  survey  officers  having  done 
their  work.  General  Westmacott  commenced  his 
retirement,  but  a  few  minutes  later  received 
orders  to  stand  fast,  as  Sir  William  Lockhart  and 
his  Staff  wished  to  come  up  to  the  Kotal.  This 
delay  was  fatal,  as  events  proved.  The  retirement 
did  not  recommence  till  2.10  p.m.  With  these 
facts  by  way  of  preface,  I  will  now  quote  Colonel 
Haughton's  own  unofficial  account — 

"  Camp,  Tirah,  Maidan,  November  lo. 

"Yesterday  was  a  fearfully  hard  day,  and  I  fear  I 
must  add  a  disastrous  day  ;  but  I  am  thankful  to  say  the 
regiment,  though  it  had  about  the  hardest  work  of 
anybody,  and  eventually  covered  the  retirement  of  the 
Northamptons,  only  lost  three  men  wounded.  .  .  .  We 
paraded  at  6.45  a.m.  to  reconnoitre  a  pass,  said  to  lead  to 
the  Bazar  valley.  The  Northamptons  were  to  go  direct 
for  the  pass,  followed  by  sappers  and  miners,  guns,  and 
then  the  15th  Sikhs.  The  Dorsets  were  to  be  on  the  left 
and  make  a  turning  movement ;  we  were  to  keep  about 
five  hundred  yards  to  the  right  and  to  make  a  turning 
movement,  and  occupy  a  detached  hill  on  the  right. 

"  Of  course  that  sounds  simple  enough,  but  the  valley 
is  cut  up  by  deep  ravines,  with  often  precipitous  banks 
sixty  or  a  hundred  feet  high,  and  to  get  to  a  place 
one  mile  off,  one  has  often  to  go  two  miles.  Well,  we 
managed  our  part,  and  there  was  very  little  opposition. 
We  had  a  stiff  climb  to  get  to  the  top  of  our  hill,  but 
when  we  got  there  were  told  that  the  guns  would  come 


HIS  ACCOUNT  OF  ''  SARAN-SARr  I  55 

there,  and  that  we  had  better  tackle  the  big  hill  where 
the  pass  was.  So  down  we  had  to  come,  and  then  go  up 
the  steep  hill  where  there  was  no  path  and  the  hillside 
was  fearful.  The  Northamptons  had  a  path,  steep  enough 
and  bad  enough,  but  a  racecourse  compared  with  ours. 
Of  course  we  were  fired  at  a  little,  but  the  guns  made  good 
practice,  and  we  and  the  Northamptons  arrived  at  the  top 
almost  together  without  any  casualties.  The  Dorsets  on 
the  left  had  a  few. 

"Well,  the  necessary  reconnaissance  had  been  made, 
and  General  Westmacott  had  given  the  order  to  commence 
the  retirement,  when  a  message  came  to  say  that  we  were 
to  wait,  as  Udny,  Lockhart,  and  the  Headquarters  Staff 
were  coming  up,  ,  .  .  We  were  sent  back  to  a  ridge,  with 
orders  to  retire  in  front  of  the  Northamptons,  and  to  move 
out  to  the  same  flank  again,  and  retire  the  same  way  as 
we  had  come.  We  waited  until  some  of  the  Northamptons 
had  got  back  to  us,  and  proceeded  to  carry  out  the  order. 
When  we  had  got  about  two-thirds  of  the  way  down,  a 
Tommy  came  running  back  saying  that  reinforcements 
were  needed,  and  that  part  of  his  regiment  were  cut  to 
bits,  and  that  the  enemy  in  force  were  coming  round  their 
left.  I  had  seen  the  Dorsets  there,  and  as  there  had  not 
been  much  firing,  thought  it  was  simply  a  Tommy  who 
had  lost  his  head,  and  moreover  I  thought,  and  still  think, 
that  the  more  men  there  were  on  the  hill,  the  more  difficult 
it  would  be  to  carry  out  the  retirement.  However,  after 
that.  Major  Des  Vocux  came  and  said  that  Colonel  Chaytor 
wanted  me  to  take  up  a  position  to  cover  his  retirement 
down  the  hill,  so  I  did  this.  Later  on  more  men  straggled 
down,  and  said  that  the  Northamptons  couldn't  move  ;  so, 
though  we  were  dead  beat,  I  gave  orders  for  the  three 
companies  with  me  to  go  up  the  hill  again.  I  sui)posc  it 
was  the  excitement,  but  if  you  had  asked  me  an  hour 
earlier,  I  should  have  said,  or  at  any  rate  have  thought, 


156  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

that  I  could  not  have  f^ot  up  the  hill  again  to  save  my 
life.  When  we  got  to  the  ridge  which  we  had  previously 
occupied,  I  found  that  the  Northamptons  had  extricated 
themselves  from  their  difficulty  more  or  less,  but  had  about 
a  dozen  killed  and  wounded.  I  got  them  to  retire  through 
us,  we  holding  the  ridge,  and  another  further  back.  We 
did  this  till  I  thought  they  had  had  plenty  of  time  to  retire 
to  the  bottom,  then  I  got  our  own  men  down  as  quickly 
as  I  could.  When  we  got  to  the  foot  of  the  second  hill 
(the  one  we  had  first  occupied  in  the  morning)  we  found 
a  party  of  Northamptons  in  a  nullah  to  our  right  [i.e.  our 
right   whilst   retiring).      This    may   give   you   some   idea. 

^  /  I  I'- 

A  is  the  hill  we  were  first  of  all  on,  B  is  part  of  the  big 
hill  (called  Saran-Sar).  The  dotted  line  is  the  road  up, 
by  which  the  Northamptons  originally  advanced.  We 
originally  advanced  on  top  of  A  (and  a  jolly  stiff  climb, 
too),  then  descended  northwards  and  ascended  nearly 
straight  up  B.  We  retired  round  east  of  hill  A,  but 
when  we  got  to  the  head  of  the  nullah  between  the  two 
hills,  I  saw  a  party  of  Northamptons  in  the  nullah  ;  they 
were  being  fired  at  by  two  or  three  men  near  C.  I  halted 
under  cover  near  D,  and  sent  Captain  Custance  and  Mr. 
Munn  on  to  A  (from  which  the  guns  and  troops  had 
already  retired).  There  were  a  few  of  the  enemy  firing 
from  north  and  east  and  west,  but  we  only  had  one  man 
hit  besides  the  two  already  mentioned,  and  we  kept  the 
enemy  from  advancing  on  the  party  of  Northamptons  in 


General  Westniacott. 
IIRIGADIER-GENERAL    RICHARD    WESTMACOTT    AND   STAFF. 

(From  a  photograpli  taken  in  Tirah  by  Lieut. -Colonel  John  Ilaicghton.) 


FORT    SARAGARHI    IN    RUINS,    SHOWING   THE   MAIN    ENTRANCE    AND    FORT 
LOCKHART   IN   THE   DISTANCE. 


GENERAL    WESTMACOTT.  1 57 

the  nullah,  and  we  killed  three  of  the  enemy  who  had 
been  firing  from  C.  An  officer  and  a  few  men  came  up 
from  the  nullah  carrying  a  couple  of  wounded,  and  asked 
me  for  help  to  carry  them.  I  sent  him  four  men,  and  told 
him  there  were,  I  thought,  some  more  of  his  men  in  the 
nullah.  He  sent  back  three  men,  who  after  about  a  quarter 
of  an  hour  came  back  and  said  that  they  had  all  retired 
the  other  way.  We  had  been  detained  about  an  hour  at 
this  place,  and  it  was  beginning  to  get  dark,  so  I  then 
retired  as  I  had  been  told  to  do.  We  were  fired  at,  of 
course,  but  got  in  about  7  p.m.  That  party  lost  them- 
selves and  were  all  killed.  The  Northamptons,  I  believe, 
lost  two  officers  killed  and  one  wounded,  fourteen  men 
killed  and  thirty-two  wounded  (some  of  whom  have  since 
died).  The  Dorsets  had  two  officers  wounded,  one  man 
killed  and  six  wounded,  15th  Sikhs  one  killed  and  four 
wounded,  36th  Sikhs  three  wounded.  So  we  must  be 
thankful  we  got  off  so  easily." 

Had  the  retirement  not  been  delayed,  darkness 
would  not  have  overtaken  the  troops  before  they 
reached  camp,  and  the  mishap  of  the  Northamptons 
would  not  have  occurred.  It  must,  however,  be 
noted  that  the  36th  Sikhs,  who  covered  the  retire- 
ment of  the  Northamptons,  suffered  scarcely  any 
loss.  Several  of  the  mishaps  in  the  Tirah  campaign 
were  undoubtedly  due  to  the  inexperience  and 
ignorance  of  frontier  warfare  of  the  officers  and 
soldiers  of  our  British  regiments.  It  was  to  this 
that  Sir  George  White  afterwards  so  specially 
referred  in  his  farewell  order  to  the  Indian  Army. 
What  a  General  could  do  in  the  retirement  from 
Saran-Sar,  General  Westmacott  did.  I  will  just 
quote,  from  the  Times  of  India,  one  or  two  remarks 


158  JOHN  H AUG H TON. 

by  eye-witnesses,  which  I  find  written  a  day  or  two 
after  this  affair — 

(i)  "The  impression  in  camp  is  that  if  it  had  not  been 
for  the  skilful  handling  of  the  retirement  by  General 
Westmacott,  matters  would  have  been  far  worse  than 
they  were."  (2)  "  General  Westmacott  remained  with  the 
rear-guard  to  the  end,  and  it  is  due  to  him  that  matters 
were  not  worse."  (3)  "  In  the  retirement  it  was  found 
that  the  men  of  G  Company  of  the  Northamptons  were 
being  wounded  so  fast  that  it  exhausted  the  strength  of 
the  company.  General  Westmacott  at  once  sent  the  36th 
Sikhs  to  reinforce  them,  and  this  regiment,  understanding 
its  errand,  made  the  second  ascent  magnificently,  and 
the  whole  force  was  withdrawn  to  the  base  of  the  hill 
without  further  casualty." 

It  was  then  almost  dusk.  The  enemy  were 
relentless  in  their  pursuit.  Three  miles  of  difficult 
country,  intersected  by  ravines,  had  still  to  be 
traversed.  Suffice  it  to  say  that  the  Northamptons 
stuck  doggedly  to  their  work,  never  abandoning  a 
wounded  man,  while  the  36th  Sikhs  covered  their 
riofht  fiank.  General  Westmacott  remained  out  till 
the  last  wounded  man,  as  he  thought,  had  passed 
on  into  camp,  and  then  at  7.30  he  came  in  himself 
with  his  rear-guard.  Unfortunately,  in  the  dark  a 
small  party  of  the  Northamptons,  consisting  of  an 
officer,  a  sergeant,  and  thirteen  men,  either  took  a 
wrong  turning  or  were  intercepted  by  the  enemy. 
They  were  not  missed  at  the  time.  Their  dead 
bodies  were  found  next  day.  They  had  fallen, 
evidently  fighting  to  the  last.  Pathans  rarely  give 
quarter,  though  occasional  cases  can  be  mentioned 


THE   PULPIT,    WITH   LAMPSTAND   AND   COLLECTING-BOX   COMIUNED,   OF 
MULLA  SAYAD  AKBAR.      (Takcii  in  the  camp,  Maidait.) 


CAUSES   OF   THE   iSgj   RISING.  1 59 

of  prisoners  being  taken  alive  by  them  in  action 
and  spared.  Captain  Souter  and  others  in  1842, 
and  Lieutenants  Fowler  and  Edwardes  in  1895,  are 
cases  in  point.  A  sergeant  and  private  captured 
in  the  Bara  valley  in  December,  1897,  were  also 
spared  and  returned  alive. 

The  sdidjinale  of  the  Saran-Sar  reconnaissance 
caused  no  lull  in  the  activity  of  the  operations  car- 
ried out  from  Maidan.  On  the  12th  General 
Westmacott's  Brigade  was  busy  foraging  north- 
ward, while  on  the  13th  General  Kempster's 
Brigade  marched  into  the  Waran  valley,  the  36th 
Sikhs  occupying  the  Tseri-Kandao  pass,  in  order  to 
keep  open  the  line  of  communication  between  the 
headquarter  camp  at  Maidan  and  General  Kempster 
in  the  Waran  valley.  Among  the  most  interesting 
results  of  General  Kempster's  expedition  were  the 
destruction  of  the  residence — a  double-storied  house 
with  a  small  mosque — of  the  Mulla  Sayad  Akbar, 
and  the  discovery  in  it  of  some  curious  documentary 
evidence  as  to  the  causes  of  the  frontier  outbreak  of 
1897.  One  document  found  there  was  a  manifesto 
from  the  notorious  Hadda  Mullah  stating  that  "the 
Sultan  (of  Turkey)  had  completely  crushed  the  in- 
fidels—  referring  to  the  Graeco-Turkish  War — in 
Europe,  and  had  seized  the  approaches  to  India,  and 
that  the  British  being  cut  off  from  reinforcements,  it 
was  an  auspicious  moment  for  all  Moslems  to  strike 
a  blow  for  Islam."  Other  letters  purporting  to  have 
come  from  General  Ghulam  Haidar,  the  Amir's 
Warden  of  the  Marches,  and  other  Afghan  officials, 


l6o  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

were  also  found.     These  documents  helped  to  throw 
some  light  on  the  motives  which,  coupled  with  fana- 
ticism and  resentment  at  or  dread  of  encroachment, 
prompted  the  trans-frontier  Pathans  to  rise,  fortu- 
nately seriatim  and  not  eit  masse,  against  us  in  1897. 
On   November   16,  General   Kempster,   having 
satisfactorily  completed  the  task  assigned  to  him  in 
the   Waran   valley,    commenced   to    return    to   the 
headquarter  camp  in  Maidan.    As  usual,  the  Afridis 
(Aka  and  Zakha  Khel)  pressed  hard  on  the  retir- 
ing force,  especially  in  the  Tseri-Kandao  defile,  a 
pass  five  miles  east  of  the  main  camp,  leading  from 
Maidan  into  the  Waran  and  thence  into  the  Mastura 
valleys.     In  this  pass  Colonel   Haughton  and   the 
36th  Sikhs  were  posted  to  keep  open  communica- 
tion and  to  cover  the  retirement.     At  daybreak  on 
the   1 6th   the   15th  Sikhs  left  camp  in  Waran  with 
orders   to  take  over  Tseri-Kandao  from  the  36th 
Sikhs.       The    Transport   of     General    Kempster's 
Brigade  reached  the  Maidan  camp  safely  by  3  p.m. 
The  I  St  Battalion  of  the  2nd  Gurkhas  took  the  first 
turn  of  rear-guard  duty,  and  were  closely  followed 
up  by  the  Afridis  to  Tseri  Kandao.    There  the  15th 
Sikhs  relieved  the  i/2nd  Gurkhas ;  and  were  thus 
disposed :    two   companies    under    Captain    O.   W. 
Carey  and  Lieutenant  T.  L.  R.  Gordon  were  placed 
on  the  fir-clad  slopes  on  the  south  of  the  pass  ;  two 
companies  on  the  bare   rocky  slopes  north    of  it ; 
further  north  still  were  two  more  companies  com- 
manded by  Captain  Lewarne  and  Lieutenant  Vivian. 
These  held  the  southern  edge   of  the   thick   pine 


HIS   ACCOUNT   OF  '' TSERI-KANDAO."         l6i 

woods  that  covered  the  summit  of  the  long  spur 
which  ran  down  from  Saran-Sar.  Lieut. -Colonel 
Abbott  himself  with  one  company  held  the  actual 
Kotal  {i.e.  east  of  the  pass),  while  another  company 
under  Captain  Rowcroft  was  placed  on  a  commandin'T 
spot  eight  hundred  yards  in  rear  to  cover  the 
general  retirement.  All  these  companies  were  very 
weak  ones.  Such  were  the  original  dispositions, 
and  for  the  time  the  enemy  was  held  in  check.  As 
soon,  however,  as  the  15th  Sikhs  endeavoured  to 
retire  from  their  position,  the  Afridis  pressed  them 
hard,  especially  Captain  Lewarne's  command.  He 
repulsed  their  rush  of  swordsmen  with  volleys  at 
very  short  range.  His  wounded,  however,  so  en- 
cumbered him  that  he  could  not  retire.  From  this 
point  I  will  describe  what  occurred  in  Colonel 
Haughton's  own  words — 

"  Maidan,  November  19. 

"On  the  morning  of  the  i6th  our  orders  were  that  we 
would  be  relieved  on  the  heights  commanding  the  Kotal 
at  8  a.m.  by  the  15th  Sikhs.  We  were  then  to  march 
towards  camp  and  take  up  positions  on  the  heights  com- 
manding the  road  back  to  camp,  with  a  view  to  the  safety 
of  the  baggage,  and  we  were  finally  to  follow  the  rear- 
guard. It  appears  that  the  2nd  Gurkhas  were  rear-guard 
until  they  got  past  the  15th  Sikhs.  They  seem  to  have 
been  heavily  attacked  the  other  side  of  the  Kotal, 
and  had,  amongst  others,  one  British  ofiicer  killed.  They 
were  much  delayed,  and  did  not  get  up  to  us  until  about 
4  p.m. 

"  I  had  previously  received  two  messages  (one  in  writ- 
ing) from  General  Kcmpster,  commanding  3rd  Ikigadc,  to 

.M 


I  62  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

which  wc  arc  temporarily  attached,  telling  mc  to  withdraw 
my  regiment  as  soon  as  the  Gurkhas  got  level  with  me. 
They  (2nd  Gurkhas)  seemed  a  good  deal  exhausted,  and 
were  more  or  less  encumbered  with  dead  and  wounded, 
so  I  allowed  them  to  get  on  a  good  bit  before  I  retired. 
General  Kempster  had  passed  me,  and  apparently  approved 
of  my  dispositions.  I  was  much  surprised  at  the  order  to 
withdraw  before  the  15th  Sikhs  had  come  down,  as  it  was 
contrary  to  my  reading  of  my  original  orders,  and  I  thought 
bad  policy.  However,  the  order  to  withdraw  was  quite 
plain.  When  we  got  back  a  few  hundred  yards,  I  heard 
that  the  15th  Sikhs  were  in  difficulties  and  wanted  help. 
General  Kempster,  thinking  the  whole  business  was  over, 
had  gone  back  to  camp.  His  deputy-assistant  adjutant- 
general  suggested  my  going  to  a  hill  called  Artillery  Hill, 
but  I  pointed  out  that  my  doing  so  would  not  in  any  way 
help  the  15th  Sikhs  to  get  away  from  the  wooded  hill  on 
the  left  of  the  Kotal.  He  then  said  he  would  go  and  get 
a  battery  (which  had  gone  on  towards  camp)  to  come 
back.  When  he  had  gone,  I  heard  that  the  15th  Sikhs 
had  so  many  killed  and  wounded  that  they  could  not 
retire  without  help  (unless  they  abandoned  their  wounded). 
I  immediately  took  the  company  that  was  with  me  and 
went  off  to  the  15th  Sikhs,  and  sent  orders  to  the  other 
companies  to  follow  me  as  fast  as  possible.  I  should  ex- 
plain that  companies  were  at  intervals  of  some  hundreds 
of  yards,  protecting  the  deep  ravine  on  both  sides  down 
which  the  road  runs.  In  fact  the  seven  companies  were 
spread  over  a  very  great  extent  of  country.  Had  I  sent  a 
company  to  Artillery  Hill  they  would  have  been  isolated, 
would  have  done  no  good,  as  they  could  not  see  into  several 
ravines  by  which  the  enemy  would  come  down,  and  they 
would  have  had  much  greater  difficulty  in  retiring  than  even 
the  15th  Sikhs  had.  When  I  got  up  to  the  15th  Sikhs,  I 
found  Captain  Custance  with  three  companies  had  already 


«; 


POSITION   FOR    THE   NIGHT.  163 

got  there.  He  and  Colonel  Abbott  (15th  Sikhs)  had  just 
been  wounded  when  I  arrived,  and  were  sent  back.  The 
15th  Sikhs  had  been  followed  up  through  the  wood,  which 
was  much  too  large  to  be  held  by  their  small  numbers. 
They  only  had  two  very  weak  companies  there.  They 
had  not  got  thirty  yards  from  the  ^([(j^q.  of  the  wood  before 
the  enemy  in  considerable  numbers  appeared  at  the  edge. 
I  don't  think  there  were  more  than  sixty  men  of  the  15th 
Sikhs.  About  a  hundred  or  more  of  the  enemy  charged 
out  of  the  wood  and  got  up  to  about  ten  yards  of  the  15th. 
Very  few  of  those  hundred  got  back  alive.  When  I  arrived 
there  were  a  great  number  of  the  enemy  still  firing  from  the 
edge  of  the  wood,  at  about  forty  yards  from  our  men  who 
were  nearest  the  wood.  The  enemy  tried  to  get  round 
our  flank,  but  we  nipped  that  in  the  bud.  Gradually  the 
fire  slackened,  and  as  it  was  beginning  to  get  dark,  and 
most  of  the  wounded  had  been  got  down  the  hill,  I  made 
arrangements  to  retire,  as,  though  we  could  not  hope  to  get 
to  camp  that  night,  the  position  was  untenable  owing  to 
the  close  proximity  of  the  large  wood,  which  was  too  big 
for  us  to  hold.  I  think  it  is  a  proof  that  the  enemy  had 
more  than  they  bargained  for  that  we  were  not  followed 
up,  and  hardly  a  shot  fired  whilst  we  were  going  down 
the  hill.  Halfway  down  I  met  Major  Des  Vceux  with 
two  companies.  When  we  got  to  the  bottom  it  was  pitch 
dark.  I  reformed  the  two  regiments — or  rather  those  com- 
panies of  them  which  were  present — and  we  made  in 
the  direction  of  camp.  We  soon  began  to  be  fired  on 
from  three  sides — not  the  side  we  had  been  fighting  the 
enemy  on.  The  worst  fire  came  from  some  houses  in  the 
direction  we  were  marching  in,  so  I  gave  orders  for  both 
regiments  to  fix  bayonets  and  go  for  the  houses,  which  wc 
did  in  good  style.  The  enemy  bolted,  but  Mr.  Munn 
stuck  one  with  his  sword,  and  wc  must  have  wounded  ant! 
killed    several,  although  wc  only  picked  up  one   body  in 


« 
164  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

the  morning.  The  road  was  fearful,  intersected  with 
precipitous  ravines,  and  we  (and  the  1 5th)  had  a  good  number 
of  wounded,  and  no  stretchers  or  doolies  to  carry  them, 
and  were  still  several  miles  from  camp  ;  so  I  decided  to 
stay  the  night  where  we  were,  as  the  houses  and  some  banks 
gave  a  certain  amount  of  protection.  Major  Des  Voeux, 
with  some  fifty  men,  had  got  into  some  ruined  buildings 
about  one  hundred  yards  further  on,  and  the  rest  of  us  and 
the  15th  got  together  at  the  buildings  we  had  taken. 
Before  we  could  make  any  sangars  two  or  three  of  the 
enemy,  who  must  have  been  hiding  in  our  midst,  jumped 
up  and  bolted,  and  in  the  pitch  darkness,  I  fancy,  got  clean 
off,  though  probably  some  of  them  were  wounded.  It  was 
just  after  this  that  Mr.  Munn  was  shot  through  the  hand 
when  within  a  foot  of  me,  and,  while  I  was  calling  for  the 
doctor,  poor  Captain  Lewarne  (15th  Sikhs)  was  shot  at  my 
side.  I  believe  he  was  shot  through  the  heart,  and  his 
death  was  practically  instantaneous.  We  managed  to  get 
up  a  few  stone  sangars,  but  it  was  impossible  to  do  much, 
and  the  enemy,  shooting  from  different  directions,  killed 
two  or  three  of  our  men  and  wounded  about  the  same 
number. 

"  The  cold  was  intense.  It  was  freezing  hard.  Our 
men  had  their  cardigan  jackets  and  capes,  most  of  the 
officers  nothing,  and  the  half  company  of  the  Dorsets  who 
were  with  us  had  nothing,  I  fortunately  had  my  poshtin* 
carried  by  a  Rabia  Khel  from  the  Samana,  but  I  did  not 
find  him  till  about  midnight,  and  was  very  cold,  being 
soaked  in  perspiration  from  the  exertion  of  racing  up  the 
hill  to  the  help  of  the  1 5th  Sikhs.  Mr.  Turing  had  hlsposhtin 
carried  by  his  orderly,  but  he  did  not  get  it  till  nearly 
morning,  when  he  found  the  poor  man,  who  had  been  shot 
dead  when  we  first  arrived  at  the  place.     We  managed  to 

*   Sheepskin  coat. 


RETREAT  NEXT  MORNING.  I  65 

find  a  sheltered  spot  for  the  wounded  under  the  warm  wall 
of  the  house,  which  had  been  burnt  and  was  still  smouldering, 
and  we  also  found  a  clear  spot  on  the  warm  embers  where 
we  got  down  half  of  the  Dorsets  at  a  time  to  get  a  little 
warmed  up. 

"  I  thanked  God  when  there  were  signs  of  daylight. 
We  sent  out  a  reconnoitring  party,  and  before  daylight 
managed  to  get  all  the  dead  and  wounded  on  to  where 
Major  Des  Voeux  was,  as  the  intervening  space  was  much 
exposed  and  would  have  been  nasty  to  cross  under  fire 
with  our  wounded  men.  We  got  off,  only  a  shot  or  two 
being  fired  at  us,  and  met  doolies  and  stretchers  with  a 
Brigade  coming  out  about  halfway  to  camp.  Our  (the  36th 
Sikhs)  loss  was  two  ofiicers  and  seven  men  wounded,  and 
six  men  killed,  all  of  whom  we  brought  back  except  one 
body.  The  15th  Sikhs  lost  one  officer  killed,  one 
wounded,  and  about  fourteen  men  killed  and  sixteen 
wounded.  They  brought  in  their  wounded,  but  had  to 
leave  their  dead  behind.  We  had  to  improvise  stretchers 
out  of  rifles  and  putties  until  we  met  the  party 
coming  out. 

"  Thank  God  things  were  no  worse.  There  were  many 
narrow  escapes.  Captain  Custance  had  two  bullets  through 
his  hat,  besides  being  wounded  in  the  thigh,  Mr.  Turing  a 
bullet  through  his  hat.  Mr.  Munn,  besides  being  shot 
through  the  hand,  had  a  sword-cut  in  the  same  hand  (right) 
and  a  bullet  through  both  legs  of  his  trousers.  Mr.  Pratt 
lost  his  way,  and  with  eight  men  of  the  Dorsets  and  two  of 
ours,  spent  the  night  in  a  ruined  house.  He  showed  great 
presence  of  mind.  Mr.  Munn  and  Captain  Custance  are  a 
great  loss  to  the  regiment.  They  are  both  splendid  officers 
on  service." 

The  effect  of  this  successful  all-night  stand, 
made   by  Colonel    Haughton  on  his  own  initiative 


1 66  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

and  when  left  to  his  own  resources,  had  a  most 
admirable  effect  upon  the  troops  serving  in  Tirah, 
and,  indeed,  on  the  entire  Army  in  India.  It,  in 
short,  established  a  precedent,  showing  how  belated 
troops,  when  overtaken  by  the  dark  and  hard 
pressed  by  Pathans,  could  best  hope  to  hold 
their  own.  Moreover  the  enemy  (Zakha,  Aka, 
Kambar,  and  Sipah  Khel)  suffered  severely — 
more  severely,  it  is  said,  than  in  any  other  action  in 
the  campaign.  That  loss  is  fairly  estimated  at 
300.  Further,  it  showed  the  Pathans  that  there 
were  amongst  us  officers  and  men  who  were  quite 
equal  to  meeting  and  worsting  them  at  their  own 
game.  The  only  previous  similar  stand  with  which 
my  study  of  frontier  warfare  has  acquainted  me,  was 
one  made  in  October,  1841,  by  General  Sale's  force 
marching  from  Kabul  to  Jalalabad.  When  Nott 
was  retiring  from  Kabul  in  October,  1842,  his  rear- 
guard and  baggage  was  caught  in  the  dark  and 
sore  pressed  by  Pathans ;  but  a  timely  reinforce- 
ment sent  out  from  camp  extricated  it,  and  brought 
in,  so  report  says,  every  man  and  animal  safe.  The 
one  incident  which  may  be  said  to  have  marred  the 
complete  success  of  Colonel  Haughton's  clever  plan 
of  action,  was  due  to  the  disobedience  of  orders  and 
ignorant  folly  of  a  small  detachment  of  the  Dorset 
regiment,  which  Major  Des  Vceux  had  posted  some 
way  down  the  pass,  when  he  himself  was  advancing 
to  support  Colonel  Haughton  and  the  15th  Sikhs. 
This  party,  consisting  of  two  young  attached  officers 
and  eleven  men,  are  supposed,  after  a  time,  to  have 


THE    VALUE    OF  HIS   EXAMPLE.  1 67 

left  their  post  and  endeavoured  to  return  to  camp. 
They  were  all  found  dead  in  a  nullah  in  the  morning-. 
Had  they,  like  Mr.  Pratt  and  his  little  party, 
remained  where  they  were,  they  would  have  been 
safe. 

When  the  news  of  this  deed  of  arms  reached 
India,  it  was  greeted  on  all  hands  with  the  warmest 
expressions  of  approval.  It  was  a  bright  spot — a 
deed  to  be  justly  proud  of — amid  a  succession  of 
incidents  in  our  frontier  fighting,  from  July,  1897, 
onwards,  which  had  caused  disappointment  and,  in 
one  or  two  cases,  more  than  disappointment.  The 
officer  in  command  had  shown  not  only  courage  but 
presence  of  mind,  endurance,  and  resource.  More- 
over, he  had  acted  on  his  own  initiative  and  re- 
sponsibility. As  I  write  these  words  I  seem  to 
see,  looming  before  me,  the  word  "  Stupid,"  the 
epithet  applied  to  the  officers  of  our  Army,  after 
the  Koornspruit  affair,  by  a  correspondent  of 
the  Times,  endorsed  in  that  journal  by  several 
"  leaders,"  and  solemnly  discussed  by  a  posse  of 
prominent  letter-writers.  A  voice  from  the 
Athenceum  Club,  using  the  same  journal  as  mouth- 
piece, cried  out  upon  "  the  humiliation  "  the  country 
had  experienced.  If  there  be  indeed  "  humiliation/ 
surely  it  lies  in  the  pessimism  and  defective  know- 
ledge that  inspire  such  comment,  and  in  the 
sensationalism  that  blinds  a  vast  section  of  the 
Press  and  the  Public  to  the  dictates  of  truth  and 
good  feeling.  "  There  is  no  new  thing  under  the 
sun."     A  hundred  and  forty  years  ago  Dr.  Johnson 


1 68  JOHN  IIAUGIITON. 

{Idler  of  November    ii,    1758)   sketched   for  us  a 
prototype  of  the  "  latter-day  journalist."  * 

*  A  special  correspondent  of  the  Morning  Post  commences  a 
letter,  dated  Pretoria,  June  28,  1900,  with  these  words  :  "  One  realizes 
that  our  army  was  planned  for  almost  any  purpose  but  that  of  war," 
etc.  This  is  one  sample  of  the  style  and  tone  affected  by  the  war 
correspondent  of  to-day.  Such,  in  his  self-confident  opinion,  is  the 
British  Army — the  Army  that  in  the  last  three  years  has  upheld  the 
interests  of  the  Empire  on  the  North-West  Frontier  of  India  and  on 
the  Gold  Coast,  in  the  Soudan  and  Uganda,  in  South  Africa  and 
China,  and  which  is  maintaining  at  this  moment  close  on  300,000 
men  on  active  service  at  an  average  distance  of  5000  miles  from  their 
base.  This,  too,  is  the  Army  which,  in  conjunction  with  our  Navy, 
sets  bounds  to  foreign  hostility. 

The  fatuity  of  such  criticism  as  I  have  quoted  defies  comment. 
Smartness,  tempered  by  ignorance,  is  the  characteristic  of  a  number 
of  the  war  correspondents  evolved  by  the  South  African  War.  The 
young  journalistic  idea,  like  every  other  "  young  idea,"  wants  forming. 
One  of  the  duties  which  the  twentieth  century  would  appear  to 
impose  on  the  National  Press,  is  the  foundation  of  an  University  for  the 
proper  education  of  its  journalists.  The  Church,  the  Law,  and  Medi- 
cine demand  a  degree  or  diploma.  The  Army,  Navy,  and  Civil 
Services,  Engineering,  Science  and  Art,  each  exact  the  test  of  adequate 
training  and  examination.  Journalism  has  no  claim  to  exemption. 
Even  heaven-born  genius  may  gain  by  guidance. 

We  soldiers — often  by  hard  and  grievous  experience — know,  better 
than  the  journalist  who  writes  01  ainatcnr,  the  weak  points  of  our 
Army  organization  and  administration  ;  and  we  in  India  certainly 
know  the  faults,  foibles,  and  failings  of  the  Military  Department. 
Despite  this  knowledge,  we  hold  the  opinion  that  the  responsible 
persons  are  men  who,  according  to  their  lights  and  subject  to  the 
over-  or  under-weight  of  human  nature's  handicap,  try  to  do  their 
duty. 

The  Army  welcomes  the  advocacy  and  appreciates  the  criticism 
of  the  Press,  when  given  temperately,  in  good  taste,  and  with  sound 
knowledge  and  judgment.  When,  as  has  happened  so  often  in  the 
last  twelve  months,  these  qualities  are  conspicuous  by  their  absence, 
we  can  only  regret  the  power  the  Press  possesses  and  misuses. 


(      109     ) 


CHAPTER    IX. 

THE    RECONNAISSANCE   TO    DWATOI. 

"  What  by  duty's  voice  is  bidden,  there  where  duty's  star  may  guide, 
Thither  follow,  that  accomplish,  whatsoever  else  betide." 

Archbishop  Trench. 
"  To  friends  a  friend  ;  .  .  . 
To  foes  how  stern  a  foe  was  he  ! 
And  to  the  valiant  and  the  free 
How  brave  a  chief!" 

Longfellow. 

The  Tirah  expedition  was  not  one  in  which  the 
troops  were  allowed  much  rest.  On  November  i8 
General  Westmacott's  Brigade  went  out  foraging, 
and  on  the  19th  it  marched  with  Sir  William  Lock- 
hart  and  his  Staff  from  the  camp  at  Maidan  to 
Bagh,  That  the  troops  knew  little  or  nothing  of 
the  task  awaiting  them  appears  from  a  remark  in  a 
letter  from  Colonel  Haughton,  written  at  Bagh  on 
November  21.  "I  hear  our  Bricrade  is  Sfoincf  out 
to-morrow  to  a  place  called  Dwatoi,  some  miles 
from  here ;  but  whether  we  are  going  there,  only  to 
come  back  again,  is  more  than  I  know.  I  do  not 
mind  the  going,  but  do  not  like  the  coming  back." 
Next   morning    (22nd)  a  strong   force*   under 

*  King's    Own    Scottish    Borderers,   l/3rd    Gurkhas,    36th    Sikhs, 
28th    Bombay   Pioneers,    No.  5  Bombay   Mountain   Battery,  No.  4 


I  70  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

Brigadier-General  Westmacott,  accompanied  by  Sir 
William  Lockhart,  started  from  Bagh  for  Dwatoi, 
the  point  where  the  Shal-oba  ("twenty  streams  or 
springs")  river,  which  drains  Maidan,  meets  with 
the  stream  that  flows  down  from  the  Rajgul  valley, 
which  is  inhabited  by  the  "  Kuki  Khel  "  clan  of  the 
Afridis.  The  united  streams  are  known  as  the 
"  Bara"  river,  down  the  bed  or  along  the  banks  of 
which  Sir  William  Lockhart,  with  Kempster's  (3rd) 
and  Westmacott's  (4th)  Brigades,  made  his  now 
historical  return  march  towards  India.  In  that 
march  he  severed  his  communications,  just  as  Sir 
Neville  Chamberlain  did  in  1861  when  he  made 
his  sixteen  days'  raid  through  the  Mahsud  Waziri 
country. 

We  are,  however,  slightly  anticipating  events. 
Of  this  little  expedition  to  Dwatoi  General  West- 
macott remarked  in  a  letter  which  he  kindly  wrote 
me  some  months  later  :  "  I  think  where  Haughton 
distinguished  himself  as  much  as  anywhere  was 
commanding  the  rear-guard  in  a  very  catchy  recon- 
naissance of  four  days  that  I  made  with  Sir  William 
Lockhart  to  Dwatoi."  The  country  between  Bagh 
and  Dwatoi  was  then  absolutely  unknown.  No 
doubt  the  intelligence  officers  had  obtained,  by 
questioning  natives,  some  general  notion  of  the 
nature  of  the  road  and  its  surroundings  ;  but  we 
all  know  how  very  vague  such  information  is.  It 
proved  to  be  the  most  difficult  bit  of  country  that 

Company  Madras,  and  No.  3  Company  Bombay  Sappers  and  Miners, 
the  Gurkha  scouts  of  both  divisions,  and  Field  Hospitals. 


ORDERS   FOR    THE   MARCH.  lyi 

our  troops  had  to  traverse  in  Tirah  ;  but  the  fact 
remains  that  no  reconnaissance  in  Tirah  was  carried 
out  with  so  Uttle  loss. 

The  orders  issued  for  the  march  were,  brieHy, 
these — 

"  Blankets,  greatcoats,  and  waterproof  sheets  only  (no 
tents)  to  be  taken.  First  Reserve  Ammunition  to  accom- 
pany the  column.  One  day's  supplies  to  be  carried  by 
the  troops,  two  days'  in  regimental  charge  (on  mules). 
The  Yorkshire  Regiment  and  i/2nd  Gurkhas  to  move 
out  at  5.30  a.m.  and  occupy  the  heights  on  either  side 
of  the  Dwatoi  defile,  Yorkshires  on  the  right,  Gurkhas 
on  the  left.  Advanced  guard  (i/srd  Gurkhas  and  No.  4 
Company  Madras  Sappers  and  Miners)  to  move  off  at 
6  a.m.,  followed  by  the  main  body  (King's  Own  Scottish 
Borderers,  No.  5  Bombay  Mountain  Battery,  No.  3  Com- 
pany Bombay  Sappers  and  Miners,  and  28th  Bombay 
Pioneers),  Field  Hospital  and  Transport,  rear-guard, 
36th  Sikhs." 

Our  flanking  battalions  moved  off  in  the  dark, 
and,  despite  some  resistance  from  the  Afridis,  won 
their  way  to  the  heights.  The  ascent  was  so  steep 
that  no  mules  could  follow  the  Yorkshire  Regiment ; 
and  the  bedding,  water,  and  rations  of  that  corps, 
having  to  be  sent  up  by  hand,  did  not  reach  them 
till  the  afternoon  of  the  23rd.  They  spent  the  night 
of  the  22nd  in  the  bitter  cold  on  those  cliffs  without 
food  or  bedding  ;  and,  indeed.  Sir  William  Lockhart, 
General  Westmacott,  and  the  troops  with  them  did 
the  same  at  Dwatoi."'     The  start  of  the  advanced 

*  This  was  no  uncommon  thing  for  Sir  William  Lockhart.     I  was 
commanding  a  company  of  mounted  infantry  under  him  at  Yamethen, 


172  JOHN   II AUG II TON. 

guard  was  considerably  delayed,  and  it  was  9  a.m. 
before  the  main  body,  with  Sir  William  Lockhart, 
marched  off.  Though  the  two  flanking  regiments 
prevented  any  massing  of  the  enemy,  the  march  of 
the  column  was  opposed  all  day  by  small  bodies 
from  the  lower  spurs  and  ridges.  The  track  was 
most  difficult.  Bagh  itself  is  situated  near  the 
southern  outlet  of  the  Shaloba  defile,  Dwatoi  being 
at  the  northern  end.  The  distance  between  the 
two  places  is  six  miles,  five  of  which  are  in  this 
narrow  defile,  flanked  by  precipitous  and  partially 
wooded  hills.  The  path  is  so  narrow  in  places  that 
but  one  mule  could  pass  at  a  time,  and  that  only 
when  the  Sappers  and  Pioneers  had  improved  the 
track.  Here  and  there  the  path  led  along  ledges 
on  the  sides  of  the  cliff,  and,  clever  as  mules  are, 
some  of  them  fell  over  into  the  stream  below  and 
were  killed.  The  water  in  the  stream  was  two  feet 
deep,  and  icy-cold,  and  both  troops  and  transport 
had  to  cross  and  recross  it  continually  throughout 
the  day.  The  main  body  reached  Dwatoi  about 
4  p.m.  The  King's  Own  Scottish  Borderers  and 
28th  Pioneers  at  once  attacked  the  enemy,  who 
were  holding  the  adjacent  hills  to  the  north,  and 


in  Burma,  in  the  cold  weather  of  1886-87.  On  one  long  march  of 
from  thirty-six  to  forty  miles,  I  was  detailed  for  rear  and  baggage 
guard.  Progress  is  slow  in  the  Burmese  jungles.  I  left  at  10  p.m., 
and  after  marching  twenty-three  hours,  found  myself,  at  9  p.m.,  in 
black  darkness,  at  the  foot  of  an  impassable  ascent.  I  had  to  bivouac 
where  I  was.  Sir  William  was  only  a  mile  or  two  away  on  the  other 
side  of  the  ridge,  but  he  and  his  troops  had  to  pass  the  night  without 
food  or  bedding,  much  to  my  annoyance  at  failing  to  reach  them 
before  darkness  and  the  difficulties  of  the  track  obliged  me  to  halt. 


T]IE   DWATOI    DEFILE.      (GENERAL   WESTMACOTT's    CKICADE   MARCIIINT, 
THROUGH    IT.) 


REAR-GUARD   AMENITIES.  I  73 

drove  them  back.  Picquets  were  posted  to  screen 
the  camp  from  sniping.  The  Afridis,  however, 
hung  around,  waiting  for  dark  to  attack  the  camp 
and  baggage ;  and  desultory  firing  was  kept  up. 
The  baggage  never  came  within  reach  of  the  ex- 
pectant foe ;  for  Colonel  Haughton,  with  that 
intuition  which  usually  prompted  him  to  do  the 
right  thing,  halted  and  parked  it  in  the  pass  for  the 
night.  A  pleasant  spot  for  a  bivouac !  Colonel 
Haughton  can  best  tell  his  own  tale,  as  he  wrote  it 
in  the  pass  itself — 

"  November  22.  —  We  are  on  rear-guard  again,  and 
goodness  only  knows  when  we  shall  get  into  camp,  I 
believe  we  return  to  Bagh  the  day  after  to-morrow.  I  hear 
a  good  deal  of  firing  going  on  in  front  of  us,  so  suppose 
the  advance  is  being  opposed.  We  do  not  mind  being 
opposed  in  advance,  but  the  nasty  job  is  being  followed  up 
when  retiring.  In  European  war,  under  such  circumstances, 
one  would  just  leave  one's  wounded  behind,  but,  fighting 
with  these  ruffians,  that  would  mean  death  and  mutilation 
to  the  wounded." 

Meantime,  the  troops  at  Dwatoi,  without  either 
blankets,  greatcoats,  or  food,  and  wet  to  the  waist, 
had  to  go  out  on  picquet  duty  and  get  through  the 
night  as  best  they  could.  There  were  seventeen 
degrees  of  frost.  Some  anxiety  (needless,  as  it 
proved)  was  felt  there  for  the  baggage  and  rear- 
guard. However,  all  was  well,  and  about  11  a.m. 
on  the  23rd  the  first  of  the  baggage  and  its  escort 
began  to  arrive.  The  Pioneers  and  Sappers  had 
gone  back  into  the  pass  early,  to  improve  the  road 


174  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

as  far  as  time  would  permit.  Meantime,  the  other 
troops  were  destroying  the  Kuki  Khel  villages,  and 
the  Survey  party  was  busy.  About  4  p.m.  a 
strong  body  of  Afridis  occupied  a  hill  to  the  north, 
and  opened  an  annoying  fire  on  both  camp  and 
picquets.  Four  companies  of  the  King's  Own 
Scottish  Borderers,  under  Colonel  Dixon,  attacked 
and  dislodged  them  ;  but  later  they  crept  up  under 
cover  of  the  holly-oak  jungle  close  to  the  picquets, 
and  kept  firing  into  them  until  midnight.  A  bitter 
cold  wind  set  in  at  nightfall,  but  the  troops  now 
had  food  and  warm  clothing.  Colonel  Haughton, 
with  the  last  of  his  baggage  and  rear-guard,  had 
come  in  safe  and  sound  before  nightfall.  His 
wayside  letter  again  tells  us  his  experiences. 

**  November  23  ;  1.15  p.m.  —  Still  on  the  road  to 
Dwatoi,  and  likely  to  be  till  dark.  Dwatoi  is  only  about 
six  miles  from  Bagh.  The  baggage  of  our  Brigade  and 
the  Army  Headquarter  Staff  baggage  started  yesterday, 
commencing  at  about  7  a.m.  We  (36th)  were  on  rear- 
guard. At  sundown  the  head  of  the  baggage  had  got 
about  three  and  a  half  miles  (so  you  may  imagine  what 
the  road  was  like)  ;  so  I  stopped  it  all  and  parked  it  for 
the  night  in  a  place  where  there  were  a  few  terraced  fields 
on  the  hillside,  put  out  picquets,  and  there  spent  the  night. 
The  road  in  front  of  us  was  even  worse,  so  it  was  impos- 
sible to  have  got  any  further  in  the  dark.  We  were  com- 
fortable enough,  but  the  troops  in  front  of  us  had  no 
baggage.  This  morning  we,  or  rather  part  of  the  baggage, 
started  off,  my  men  going  on  with  their  picks  and  shovels 
and  crowbars  to  try  and  make  some  sort  of  road.  I  am 
in   hopes   that  we  may  get   in    to-night,  as  camp  is  only 


THREE   DAYS   ON  REAR-GUARD.  I  75 

about  two  and  a  half  miles  distant,  and  the  last  mile  and 
a  half  is  comparatively  good  going.  It  is  mostly  a  river 
with  a  very  rocky  stony  bed,  but  is  like  '  Rotten  Row  ' 
compared  to  what  is  before  it.  I,  like  most  others,  got 
very  wet  yesterday,  fording  the  river  many  times  ;  but  I 
was  all  right,  having  a  complete  change  of  clothes,  which 
many  had  not.  The  people  generally  were  fairly  peace- 
able, but  there  are  one  or  two  who  have  done  a  lot  of 
sniping,  and  have  hit  five  or  six  men.  You  may  say, 
*  Why  don't  you  stop  them  ? '  but,  if  you  saw  the  country, 
you  would  know  that  it  was  not  so  easy.  I  have  sent 
some  men  up  some  fearful  hills,  and  they  and  the  Gurkhas 
on  the  other  hills  seem  to  have  driven  the  snipers  off." 

Colonel   Haughton's  stay  at  Dwatoi  was  a  very 
brief  one.     In  fact,  we  may  say  that  he  spent  the 
three  days  (22nd  to  24th  November)  on  rear-guard 
duty — two    days    going   and    one    returning.       Sir 
William  Lockhart  decided  on  an  early  move  on  the 
morning  of  the  24th,  knowing  that  the  Pathan  is 
loth   to  act  until  the  sun  is   up.     The  camp   was 
astir  at  5.30,  and  so  quickly  and  expeditiously  were 
the  sick  and  wounded,  hospitals  and  transports,  got 
under  way,  that  they  were  all  back  into  the  defile 
before  the  Afridis  could  oret  a  chance  of  attackino- 
them.     They  consequently  had  only   the  picquets 
and  rear-guard  (36th  Sikhs  as  usual)  to  deal  with  ; 
and  as  two  guns,   posted    near  the  mouth   of  the 
defile,    covered    the    retirement    of    the    picquets, 
which  again  mutually  protected  each  other,  little  if 
any  loss  was  incurred.     Colonel   Haughton's  diary, 
under  date  November  25,  thus  continues  his  narra- 
tive— 


176  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

"  We  got  into  camp  at  Dvvatoi  at  dusk  (on  23rd).  It 
was  fearfully  cold,  eighteen  degrees  of  frost  and  a  horrible 
wind.  I  had  my  '  dog-kcnncl,'  and  was  fairly  snug  at 
night.  We  had  two  men  wounded  during  the  night  by 
snipers.  We  got  up  at  5.30  a.m.,  but  did  not  ourselves 
get  off  till  nearly  eight,  as  we  were  on  rear-guard.  Things 
soon  began  to  get  lively.  It  was  terribly  cold,  as,  in 
addition  to  the  wind,  the  road  for  the  first  mile  and  a  half 
was  mostly  in  the  icy  water  of  the  river.  Then  the  river 
takes  a  sharp  turn,  and  the  road  (a  goat-track)  goes  up 
over  some  rocks  on  to  the  hillside  above  the  river.  Of 
course  there  was  a  tremendous  block  here,  and  the  enemy 
from  long  ranges,  with  Lee-Metford  rifles,  began  to  snipe 
us  freely.  I  went  on  about  fifty  yards,  to  try  and  find 
positions  from  which  we  could  fire,  etc.  While  away,  out 
of  the  four  companies  behind,  three  moved  off  up  the  hills 
to  turn  out  some  of  the  enemy,  I  sent  back  for  a  com- 
pany to  come  on  to  me,  not  knowing  that  there  was  only 
one  company  there.  This  came  along,  and  I  posted  it  on 
a  spur  overlooking  the  river  by  which  we  had  come.  The 
consequence  was  that  there  were  some  thirty  hospital 
ponies  and  some  doolies,  etc.,  down  in  the  river-bed  with 
nobody  behind  them,  though  we  were  on  the  bank  imme- 
diately above  them,  but  we  could  not  actually  see  them. 
Suddenly  there  was  a  shout  of  '  Pathans ! '  and  almost 
immediately  we  saw  about  thirty  Pathans  going  off  up 
the  river  (down  which  we  had  come)  with  a  dozen  ponies. 
They  had  crept  down  under  cover  of  the  banks,  but 
were  unable  to  get  back  that  way  with  the  ponies. 
Some  managed  to  get  across,  though  of  these  several  were 
hit,  but  some  others  took  protection  under  the  banks,  and 
apparently  dared  not  face  the  bit  of  open  they  would  have 
had  to  cross.  Or,  possibly,  they  may  have  thought  that 
we  would  not  come  back,  and  of  course,  as  long  as  we  did 
not  do  so,  they  were  quite  safe.     However,  Captain  Venour 


A    TIRAH    "'dog-kennel. 


^ 

^ 

r  ^    ' 

^^^HKT^  ^s 

5^  .*M-!*<S 

^T^^^ig|||iMBMH| 

"'■"   ^   *^Mia^ii^M 

Mi^n 

^■\ 

pRBr " 

iifeitfyffi^ 

^^ 

i^'l-nrl 

DWATOI. 
[From  a  /'holograph  h  Lieut. -Colonel  John  Ilaughton.) 


''A    LITTLE   BIT   OF  EXCITEMENTS  1 77 

(5th  Panjab  Infantry,  doing  duty  with  the  36th  Sikhs) 
went  down  with  a  section  and  attacked  them,  whilst  the 
rest  of  the  company  waited  on  the  top  ready  to  fire  if 
they  ran  away.  Unfortunately  they  passed  one  man,  who 
was  under  the  bank,  and  who  fired  into  them  after  they 
had  passed,  and  wounded  Captain  Venour  slightly  in  the 
leg,  and  killed  a  sepoy  before  he  himself  was  killed.  I 
then  went  down,  and  we  went  on  until  we  overtook  all 
the  ponies.  However,  three  of  the  ponies  were  so  badly 
wounded  that  we  had  to  shoot  them.  I  counted  five 
Pathans  dead  on  the  ground,  and  know  there  were  more 
hit,  but  we  only  got  two  rifles.  Altogether  it  was  a  little 
bit  of  excitement,  and  I  expect  will  make  the  enemy  a 
little  more  careful  about  following  up.  It  was  a  score,  as 
on  so  many  occasions  our  troops  have  left  dead  behind, 
and  the  enemy  hardly  ever  do,  but  on  this  occasion  the 
process  was  reversed.  It  is  a  treat  to  get  near  the  enemy, 
as  usually  they  simply  lie  hidden  at  eight  hundred  yards 
or  so,  and  snipe  one  in  safety  to  themselves  ;  and  in  this 
way,  I  am  sorry  to  say,  in  addition  to  Captain  Venour 
and  the  man  who  was  killed,  we  had  thirteen  men  wounded 
besides  two  the  night  before  and  one  last  night.  Captain 
Venour  makes  the  sixth  officer  who  has  been  wounded 
with  the  regiment." 

The  last  of  the  rear-guard  reached  the  camp  at 
Bagh  by  5  p.m.  on  the  24th.  Thus,  while  the 
six-mile  march  to  Dwatoi  took  thirty-six  hours  {i.e. 
six  hours  per  mile),  the  return  from  it,  thanks  to  the 
work  done  on  the  track  by  the  pioneers  and  sappers, 
took  only  ten  hours,  or  two-thirds  of  a  mile  per 
hour.  As  the  rear  troops  debouched  from  the 
defile,  the  2nd  Yorkshire  Regiment,  and  the  i/2nd 
Gurkhas  simultaneously  fell  back  from  the  heights 

N 


178  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

commandin<)^  the  pass.  The  enemy  followed,  and 
kept  up  a  heavy  fire  on  the  retiring  troops,  but 
there  were  no  casualties.  The  correspondent  of 
the  Times  of  India^  writing  on  the  spot  and  at  the 
time,  concludes  his  account  in  these  words  : — 

"  It  was  a  most  masterly  retirement,  and  the  whole 
force  is  enthusiastic  over  General  Westmacott's  handling 
of  his  small  force,  and  of  the  magnificent  work  of  Colonel 
Haughton  and  the  36th  Sikhs.  This  is  the  fifth  rear- 
guard action  which  they  have  been  called  upon  to  fight 
during  the  last  month,  and  on  each  occasion  they  have 
acquitted  themselves  like  men.  Six  officers  have  been 
wounded,  and  considerably  over  a  hundred  men  killed 
and  wounded,  since  the  first  attack  was  made  on  the 
Samana  range.  The  reconnaissance  to  Dwatoi  from 
Tirah  Maidan  deserves  to  be  historical,  not  only  on 
account  of  the  hardships  which  the  men  so  cheerily 
endured,  but  on  account  of  the  magnificent  way  both 
the  advance  and  retirement  were  conducted,  the  gorge 
being  the  worst  that  any  frontier  soldier  has  seen  in  our 
frontier  wars.  While  enthusiastic  over  the  troops  of  the 
main  body,  the  work  done  by  the  Yorkshires  and  the 
I /2nd  Gurkhas  must  not  be  forgotten.  In  crowning 
the  flanking  heights,  they  often  had  to  fight  detached 
skirmishes,  and  two  British  officers  of  the  Yorkshire 
Regiment  fell  while  gallantly  leading  their  men.  The 
2nd  Yorkshire  Regiment  and  i/2nd  Gurkhas  remained 
out  on  the  hills  three  days  and  two  nights.  They 
had  a  very  trying  time.  Whilst  clearing  off  the  Afridis 
(on  the  22nd)  two  young  officers  of  the  Yorkshires 
(Lieutenant  D.  E.  C.  Jones  and  2nd  Lieutenant  O.  C.  S. 
Watson),  with  ten  or  twelve  men,  most  gallantly  turned 
some  of  the  enemy  out  of  three  houses  on  a  spur  com- 
manding  the   ravine.     The    officers   led,   and    used    their 


Sl/i  PENN  S  YMONS  AND  YORKSHIRE  REGIMENT.    1 7 g 

revolvers.  Lieutenant  Jones,  just  out  from  England,  was 
killed,  and  2nd  Lieutenant  Watson,  with  a  few  months' 
service  only,  was  dangerously  wounded.  It  is  only  a  few 
days  ago  that  Major-Gencral  Symons  *  highly  compli- 
mented two  other  young  officers  of  this  battalion  in  front 
of  their  companies  for  their  dash  and  courage  in  leading 
their  men." 

*  Sir  Penn  Symons,  who  died  of  his  wounds  after  the  battle  of 
Dundee  (Natal),  in  October,  1899. 


l8o  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER    X. 

THE    MARCH    DOWN    THE    BARA    VALLEY. 

"When  I  first  joined  the  army,  the  idea  prevailed  that  it  was  the 
reckless  and  lawless  man  that  made  the  best  soldier.  I  have  not 
found  it  so.  When  men  are  partially  fed,  cold  and  wet,  and  their 
nerves  are  shaken  by  shot  and  shell,  it  is  not  the  lawless  man,  but  the 
soldier  who  has  disciplined  himself,  who  responds  most  promptly  and 
cheerfully  to  the  call  of  duty,  and  does  what  his  Queen  and  country 
expect  of  him." — From  General  Sir  George  White's  speech  at  the 
Homes  for  Working  Boys  in  London,  May  21,  1900. 

After  the  reconnaissance  to  Dwatoi  and  the  Rajgul 
valley.  General  Westmacott's  Brigade  was  left  at 
Bagh  to  rest  for  a  brief  period.  Sir  William  Lock- 
hart,  however,  sorely  tried  as  he  was  at  this  time 
with  indifferent  health,*  did  not  spare  himself. 
With  Brigadier-Generals  Gaseleef  and  Hill  he 
personally  carried  out  the  chastisement  of  the 
Massuzai  and  Chamkanni  clans.  With  that  my 
story  has  nothing  to  do.  We  will  return  to  Colonel 
Haughton,  whom,  on  December  9,  we  shall  find  at 
Dwatoi,  writing  thus  to  his  wife  : — 

*  His  death  in  March  last  was  deeply  regretted  by  the  Indian 
army.  Under  him  officers  and  men  were  proud  to  serve  ;  for  he 
feared  not  responsibility,  and  always  "meant  business."  He  under- 
stood frontier  war  as  war,  and  not  as  a  politically-guided  procession. 
Withal,  he  was  loved  as  well  as  feared  by  the  frontier  tribesmen,  as 
the  Afridis  showed  by  the  "  send-off"  that  they  gave  him  in  the  spring 
of  189S,  when  peace  was  at  last  concluded.  Some  of  those  who  gave 
him  the  "send-off"  are  represented  in  the  illustration  facing  p.  222. 

t  Now  Lieutenant-General  Sir  Alfred  Gaselee,  K.C.B.,  command- 
ing the  British  Forces  at  Peking. 


"THE   ROYAL    REAR-GUARDSP  l8l 

"Camp  Dwatoi,  December  9,  1897, 
"  We  have  been  having  a  busy  time  since  I  last  wrote. 
On  the  7th  our  Brigade  left  Bagh.  We  were,  as  usual,  on 
rear-guard.  We  now  call  ourselves  'The  Royal  Rear- 
Guards,'  as  we  always  have  that  onerous  duty.  ...  As 
soon  as  the  baggage  got  to  the  defile  there  was  an  awful 
jam,  and  many  of  the  poor  beasts,  in  twenty  hours — a  good 
part  of  which  time  they  had  been  standing  in  the  water — 
had  only  got  three  miles.  I  was,  till  after  2  a.m.  the 
next  morning,  trying  to  urge  on  the  baggage,  and  I  think 
most  of  the  regiments,  that  came  on  here,  got  their  kits. 
I  then  had  to  give  it  up,  and  about  3.30  a.m.  I  lay  down 
on  some  soft  stones  with  a  bag  of  atta  as  a  pillow.  I  had 
my  poshteen  on,  fortunately,  but  my  pony,  with  my  blanket 
and  poshteen  boots,  had  lost  itself  in  the  crowd  of  trans- 
port. However,  I  slept  like  a  babe  for  about  two  and  a 
half  hours,  and  was  not  really  cold,  as  I  had  my  feet  to  a 
fire,  and  fortunately  it  was  a  much  warmer  night  than  we 
have  been  having.  I  then  got  up,  had  a  good  swig  of  rum 
and  hot  water,  and  proceeded  to  make  myself  unpleasant 
to  every  one  with  the  baggage.  Though  I  had  to  wade 
about  in  the  water  a  bit,  I  managed  to  keep  toler- 
ably warm,  and  got  everything  in  here  by  i  p.m.  on 
the  8th. 

"  Fortunately  the  enemy  let  us  alone.  The  rascals  had 
destroyed  part  of  the  path  which  we  had  made  when  we 
came  here  before,  otherwise  it  is  possible  all  our  baggage 
might  have  got  in  on  the  night  of  the  7th.  Some  kind 
officer  had  considerately  sent  me  a  great  hunk  of  tinned 
beef  and  bread,  or  I  should  have  been  in  a  bad  way.  I 
had  made  my  report  to  the  General,  when  I  found  that 
Mr.  Van  Somcren  (one  of  our  new  youngsters)  had  been 
ordered  to  take  a  company  and  occupy  a  hill  from  which 
the  enemy  were  sniping.  It  occurred  to  me  that  the  poor 
boy  might  have  rather  a  nasty  job,  so,  after  changing  my 


1 82  JOHN  ITAUGHTON. 

wet  boots,  socks,  and  Ijrceches,  and  casting  a  longing  look 
at  the  tiffin  which  was  getting  ready,  I  got  hold  of  a 
company  and  made  a  detour  over  some  fearful  hills,  so  as 
to  catch  the  enemy  in  flank,  whilst  he  was  attacking  them 
in  front.  Mr.  Turing  asked  to  come  with  mc,  and  I  was 
very  glad  to  have  him.  After  I  left,  the  General  sent  an 
order  for  the  rest  of  the  regiment  to  turn  out  to  support 
Mr.  Van  Someren's  company.  I  am  glad  I  had  not  waited 
for  orders,  as  I  believe,  without  our  flank  attack,  he,  although 
reinforced,  would  have  had  a  very  hard  job,  and  would  have 
lost  a  lot  of  men.  As  it  was  we  had  only  three  men  wounded  ; 
and  a  company  of  the  Gurkhas,  who  had  joined  Mr.  Van 
Someren,  had  one  man  killed,  but  that  was  after  we  had 
all  got  up,  and  been  there  for  some  time.  It  was  a  hard 
climb,  and  I  was  pretty  well  fagged  when  I  got  back  to 
camp  about  dusk.  I  left  Mr.  Craster  and  Mr.  Van 
Someren  with  two  companies  on  the  hill,  and  we  built 
them  good  sangars  before  we  left.  I  don't  think  they 
were  attacked,  but  the  night  before  a  picquet  of  the  King's 
Own  Scottish  Borderers  were  more  determinedly  attacked 
than  on  any  previous  occasion  during  this  expedition.  The 
enemy  tried  to  rush  them  three  times,  but  never  could  get 
nearer  than  fifteen  yards,  and  I  hope  lost  pretty  heavily, 
though  I  know  shooting  at  night,  even  at  close  quarters, 
is  very  ineffective. 

"The  King's  Own  Scottish  Borderers  are  a  grand 
regiment.  The  General  was  very  pleased  with  Mr.  Van 
Someren.  I  believe  he  really  did  very  well,  and  the  enemy 
only  bolted  when  he  got  close  up.  The  enemy  were  shoot- 
ing horrid  straight,  and  it  was  wonderful  luck  that  we  had 
only  three  men  hit  attacking  the  place.  Several  men  had 
their  accoutrements  and  clothing  shot  through  without 
being  touched,  and  both  Mr.  Turing  and  I  were  several 
times  hit  by  stones  or  splinters  of  stones  knocked  up  by  the 
bullets.     Luckily  there  were  a  good  many  small  trees  and 


SECOND   LIEUTENANT    VAN  SO  ME  REN.         1 83 

bushes  about,  so  the  enemy  seldom  got  a  real  good  view  ; 
but  we  could  not  move  without  a  bullet  hitting  either  at  our 
feet,  or  cutting  the  branches  over  or  beside  us.  ...  I  am 
now  very  fit,  and  was  able  to  eat  a  mighty  dinner  when  I 
got  in,  and  sleep  the  sleep  of  the  just." 

It  is  not  my  intention  here  to  write  a  detailed 
account  of  the  march  down  the  Bara  valley  from 
Dwatoi  to  General  Hammond's  camp  at  Swaikot. 
As  I  have  mentioned  in  my  preface,  five  historians 
have  already  given  their  several  versions  of  this 
now  historical  march.  In  a  memoir  of  but  one 
actor  in  that  scene  of  hard  work  and  hard  fio-htinsf, 
there  is  no  call  to  do  more  than  describe  the  share 
that  that  one  actor  took  in  it.  With  the  exception 
of  the  letter  I  have  just  quoted,  nothing  written  by 
him  has  come  into  my  hands.  Furthermore,  during 
the  last  two  days  of  the  march  Colonel  Haughton 
was  too  unwell  for  active  duty.  Hard  work  and 
exposure  had  been  his  lot  for  some  three  months, 
and  for  the  moment  he  succumbed  to  the  strain. 
He  was  himself  again  in  a  day  or  two. 

To  revert,  however,  to  the  point  where  we  left 
him — in  the  camp  at  Dwatoi  on  December  8.  On 
December  9,  one  hundred  rifles  of  the  36th  Sikhs 
formed  part  of  a  column  commanded  by  General 
Westmacott,  and  accompanied  by  Sir  William 
Lockhart,  which  marched  five  miles  up  the  Rajgul 
valley  and  chastised  the  Kuki  Khel  villagers.  The 
northern  slopes  of  this  valley  were  found  to  be 
overgrown  with  ilex,  olive,  and  hollyoak ;  while 
more  distant  peaks  and  passes  were  seen  covered 


184  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

with  snow  and  pine-forest.  On  December  10  the 
march  down  the  Bara  valley  commenced.  Haughton 
with  his  regiment  formed  the  advanced  guard  of  the 
column.  The  4th  Brigade  led  the  way,  and  the 
3rd  Brigade  brought  up  the  rear,  the  transport 
moving  between  the  two.  The  weather  was  bitterly 
cold,  the  troops  and  animals  had  to  wade  all  day 
through  water,  and  the  enemy  hung  upon  the  front, 
flanks,  and  rear — especially  the  rear,  of  the  column. 
Though  no  serious  loss  was  sustained,  the  3rd 
Brigade  only  succeeded  in  reaching  Karana  by 
nightfall,  five  miles  from  Dwatoi,  and  three  miles 
short  of  Sandana,  where  the  4th  Brigade  was 
encamped.  At  7  p.m.  rain  set  in  and  lasted  all 
night.  The  troops  spent  a  very  miserable  night, 
for  all  tents  had  been  left  behind,  and  the  baesfaee 
of  the  column  had  been  reduced  to  the  minimum. 
However,  when  day  broke  on  the  nth,  the  inevi- 
table march  had  to  be  resumed.  Wet  and  weary, 
troops  and  followers  got  under  way.  The  distance 
from  Sandana  to  Sher  Khel  was  ten  miles,  and  from 
Karana  thirteen.  To  attempt  such  a  long  march  on 
such  a  day  was  a  very  great  mistake.  Common 
sense  would  have  suggested  to  simply  close  the 
3rd  Brigade  up  to  the  4th,  or  possibly  move  forward 
a  mile  or  two  from  Sandana,  provided  a  suitable 
camping-ground  was  found.*  However,  this  is 
wisdom  after  the  event.     What  with  rain,  mist,  the 

*  It  is  at  any  rate  clear  that  two  miles  short  of  Sher  Khel  there  was 
a  suitable  camping-ground,  for  instructions  were  sent  to  General 
Kerapster  to  halt  his  3rd  Brigade  there,  if  he  wished. 


MAJOR   DOWNMAN  AND    THE   GORDONS.     1 85 

Steep  banks  of  the  stream  which  had  to  be  ramped, 
and  the  shppery  state  to  which  the  ramps  were  soon 
reduced  by  the  traffic  on  them,  the  rear-guard  of  the 
3rd  Brigade  did  not  leave  Karana  till  10.15  a.m. 
The  river  had  risen  considerably,  and  the  flanking 
duties  of  the  leading  Brigade  were  heavy,  though 
no  stubborn  resistance  was  offered  by  the  Zakha 
Khel  tribesmen,  through  whose  territory  the  column 
was  now  moving.  By  4  p.m.  the  4th  Brigade 
had  reached  Sher  Khel.  The  3rd  Brigade  fared 
less  well.  The  enemy  pressed  heavily  on  the 
Gordon  Highlanders,  who  formed  the  rear-guard. 
As  the  4th  Brigade  marched  away  from  the  3rd, 
the  latter  had  to  send  out  its  own  flanking  parties. 
The  4th  Brigade  should  have  waited  on  and  regu- 
lated its  pace  by  the  3rd.  It  is  true  that  permission 
was  sent  to  General  Kempster  to  halt  his  Brigade 
two  miles  short  of  Sher  Khel ;  and  that  that  officer, 
by  deciding  not  to  avail  himself  of  this  permission, 
is  directly  responsible  for  what  ensued.  At  the 
same  time  we  cannot  help  feeling  that  the  4th 
Brigade  might  have  done  more  to  help  the  3rd. 
Major  Downman,  of  the  Gordon  Highlanders,  held 
that  day  the  responsible  post  of  rear-guard  com- 
mander, and  acquitted  himself  right  well.  He  fell, 
two  years  later,  on  the  field  of  Magersfontein,  fight- 
ing staunchly  to  the  last.  It  has  been  proved  on  the 
most  undeniable  evidence  that  the  statement  that  he 
ordered  the  retirement  of  the  Highlanders  was  a 
complete  misapprehension.  He  jumped  up  to  stop 
a  retirement,  and  was  instantly  shot  dead  by  the 


I  86  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Boers.     This  is  the  evidence  of  an  eye-witness  who 
was  at  his  side. 

General  Kempster  having,  most  unfortunately, 
decided  to  push  on  to  Sher  Khel,  the  transport 
towards  dusk  got  hopelessly  entangled  in  some  rice- 
fields,  three  miles  short  of  that  camping-ground. 
The  transport  drivers,  worn  out  with  cold  and 
fatigue,  discovered  alcohol  and  made  themselves 
hopelessly  drunk.  Others  deserted  their  animals 
and  went  on  to  Sher  Khel.  Major  Downman  saw 
the  only  chance  of  safety  for  his  tired  and  belated 
rear-guard  was  to  occupy  and  hold  some  defensive 
position  during  the  night.  He  therefore  seized  a 
small  hamlet,  and  there,  with  his  men,  maintained 
himself  in  safety  till  morning.  The  Afridis  kept  up 
a  desultory  fire  on  them,  but  did  not  care  to  come 
to  close  quarters.  The  fascinations  of  pillaging 
drew  off  numbers  from  the  less  lucrative  amusement 
of  **  sniping  "  at  the  rear-guard.  A  very  small  effort 
had  been  made  to  send  back  assistance  from  Sher 
Khel.  One  company  of  the  King's  Own  Scottish 
Borderers  went  out  and  helped  in  a  number  of 
soldiers,  followers,  and  transport  animals,  as  well  as 
a  party  of  wounded,  some  of  whom  were  being 
carried  in  by  officers.  The  manner  in  which  the 
drivers  deserted  the  animals,  and  the  doolie- bearers 
the  wounded,  on  this  occasion,  is  a  proof — if  any 
proof  is  needed — of  the  little  reliance  that  is  to  be 
placed  on  this  class  of  native  of  India  at  a  pinch.* 

*  If  we  had  trained  Ambulance  Corps  in  India,  some  esprit  dc 
corps  might  be  instilled  into  them,  and  also  such  a  sense  of  discipline 


THE    GORDONS   EXTRICATED.  1 87 

When  in  frontier  warfare  it  is  plain  that  a  column 
cannot  reach  camp  before  dark,  there  is  really  only 
one  resource,  and  that  is  to  collect  the  troops,  pack 
the  transport,  and  remain  all  night  on  the  defensive. 
This  is  what  Colonel  Haughton  did  instinctively  ; 
and  had  General  Kempster  done  the  same  on 
December  11,  the  worst  mishap  of  the  Bara  valley 
retreat  would  have  been  avoided.  Early  on  the 
1 2th  General  Kempster  set  out  from  Sher  Khel  with 
two  battalions  and  a  mountain  battery  to  endeavour 
to  repair  as  far  as  possible  the  mischief  resulting 
from  the  mistakes  made  on  the  nth.  Many  trans- 
port animals  and  followers  and  many  of  the  loads 
were  never  recovered.  The  rear-guard,  under 
Major  Downman,  was  found  completely  surrounded 
by  the  enemy,  who  had  seized  some  good  positions 
around  the  houses,  and  having  at  dawn  crept  up 
close,  had  succeeded  in  killing  and  wounding  several 
of  the  Gordon  Highlanders.  By  11  a.m.  this  rear- 
guard had  been  safely  escorted  into  the  Sher  Khel 
camp.  A  halt  for  the  day  had  been  ordered.  The 
weather  was  bright  and  warm,  and  every  one  basked 
in  the  sun  and  dried  his  kit.  It  is  again  im- 
possible not  to  reflect  that,  had  the  dictates  of 
common  sense  been  listened  to  the  previous  day, 
and  a  halt  or  very  short  march  been  ordered,  the 
sad    scenes  with   which  the  names  "  Bara  valley " 

and  duty  as  would  prevent  this  dastardly  desertion  of  the  sick  and 
wounded.  We  ought  to  have  in  India  a  trained  Ambulance  Reserve 
such  as  that  which  the  Order  of  St.  John  of  Jerusalem  placed  at  the 
disposal  of  the  British  Central  Red  Cross  Committee  for  South  Africa. 
—  Vide  Appendix  C,  and  Journal  of  the  Royal  United  Service  Institu- 
tion for  October,  1900. 


1 88  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

and  "  Sher  Khel  "  will  always  be  associated,  might 
never  have  taken  place.  The  casualties  on  the  i  ith 
were :  two  officers  severely  wounded,  seven  men 
killed,  seven  men  dangerously,  twenty  severely,  and 
eight  slightly  wounded. 

On  December  13,  after  a  most  welcome  and 
necessary  rest  for  twenty-four  hours,  the  Division 
started  for  Swaikot.  (If  in  this  march  little  or  no 
mention  is  made  of  Major-General  Yeatman- Biggs, 
commanding  the  Division,  it  must  be  borne  in  mind 
that  he  was  throughout  it  seriously  ill  and  unfit  for 
duty.  He  died  a  few  weeks  later.)  The  order  of 
march  was  now  changed.  The  3rd  Brigade  led, 
and  the  4th  Brigade  brought  up  the  rear.  It  was 
on  December  13  and  14  that  Colonel  Haughton 
was  too  unwell  for  duty.  The  command  of  the 
36th  Sikhs  devolved  on  Major  Des  Voeux.  The 
lessons  learnt  on  the  nth  resulted  in  the  issue  of 
orders:  (i)  that  flanking  parties  and  picquets  were 
not  to  leave  their  posts  until  the  whole  Division 
had  passed  ;  (2)  that  the  advanced  guard  of  the 
leading  and  the  rear-Q-uard  of  the  rear  Brigade  were 
each  to  consist  of  half  a  battalion  ;  (3)  that  special 
guards  of  an  officer  and  twenty  men  were  to  be 
told  off  to  guard  each  hospital  and  keep  the  doolie- 
bearers  to  their  work. 

As  a  specimen  of  the  arrangement  of  a  column 
on  the  march  during  this  Tirah  expedition,  I  may, 
perhaps,  without  risk  of  being  tedious  (to  soldiers, 
at  any  rate,  who  study  their  profession),  state  in 
detail  the  formation  and  order  of  the  Division  during- 


FORMATION   OF  COLUMN.  1 89 

this,  the  most  critical  day's  march  in  the  Bara 
valley.  According  to  the  information  received,  the 
best  route  was  said  to  be  down  the  river  bed  for 
three  miles  to  a  village  named  Galai  Khel.  There 
the  track  was  said  to  leave  the  river  and  follow  a 
narrow  valley  to  the  Lakarai  Kotal,  and  after  cross- 
ing that  Kotal  to  descend  to  Swaikot,  leaving  Shinka- 
mar  defile  (made  only  too  memorable  on  January  29, 
1898)  on  the  left  and  Barkai  on  the  right.  It  was 
reported  that  there  was  no  water  between  Galai 
Khel  and  Barkai.  The  troops  were  warned  of  this, 
and  ordered  to  carry  water.  Shinkamar  was  sup- 
posed to  be  seven  miles  from  Sher  Khel,  and  was 
fixed  upon  as  the  halting-place.  The  distance,  how- 
ever, proved  to  be  greatly  under-estimated.  The  3rd 
Brigade  marched  at  7.30  in  the  following  order  : — 
Advanced  guard:  four  companies  Gordon  High- 
landers under  Colonel  Mathias,  two  guns,  and  two 
companies  Sappers  and  Miners.  Flanking  parties : 
2nd  Punjab  Infantry  and  2nd  Gurkhas.  Mai^i  body: 
four  guns,  four  companies  Gordon  Highlanders. 
Transport,  with  the  hospitals  in  the  middle.  Rear- 
guard: the  Dorset  regiment. 

This  Brigade  met  with  no  resistance  worth 
speaking  of.  The  4th  Brigade  had  a  very  different 
experience.  It  left  camp  in  the  following  order : — 
Advanced  guard :  J  hind  Infantry.  Hospitals. 
Transport.  Main  body :  Royal  Scots  Fusiliers,  28th 
Bombay  Pioneers,  Northampton  Regiment,  No.  8 
Mountain  Battery,  King's  Own  Scottish  Bor- 
derers, 36th  Sikhs.     Rear-guard :  No.  5  (Bombay) 


IQO  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

Mountain  Battery,  i/srd  Gurkhas,  Gurkha  scouts. 
This  Brigade  began  to  move  off  at  9.30.  The  last 
baggage  did  not  get  away  till  10.45,  ^"^i  behind 
that  was  the  main  body  and  rear-guard.  A  narrow 
defile  in  the  river-bed  three  quarters  of  a  mile  from 
the  camp  delayed  the  whole  column.  Much  difficulty 
also  was  experienced  in  withdrawing  the  picquets. 
The  enemy  had  crept  up  under  cover  close  to 
them,  and  no  sooner  did  they  leave  their  posts 
than  the  enemy  occupied  them  and  opened  fire. 
No.  5  Bombay  Mountain  Battery  had  to  come  into 
action  to  cover  the  retirement  of  these  picquets, 
and  even  then  the  enemy  were  actually  into  the 
houses  of  the  "  Sher  Khel"  village  before  the  King's 
Own  Scottish  Borderers  were  well  out  of  them. 
Practically,  throughout  this  march,  the  entire  main 
body  of  this  Brigade  was  a  rear-guard.  The 
batteries  fell  back  and  took  up  positions  succes- 
sively to  cover  the  troops  in  rear.  The  3rd  Gurkhas 
were  in  rear  of  all,  with  two  companies  in  the  river 
bed  and  one  on  each  bank.  The  Gurkha  scouts 
destroyed  all  fortified  villages  from  Sher  Khel  to 
Galai  Khel.  At  the  latter  place  a  narrow  steep 
track  leads  upward  from  the  river-bed  towards  the 
Lakarai  Kotal.  Here,  as  a  matter  of  course,  the 
baggage  was  greatly  delayed,  and  the  entire  Brigade 
made  a  long  halt.  The  enemy  thought  they  saw 
their  opportunity,  and  pushed  on  by  the  north  side 
or  left  flank  of  the  column  with  the  intention  of 
falling  on  the  baggage  and  cutting  in  between  the 
two  Brigades,     The  dispositions  made  by  General 


WESTMACOTT'S   SKILL   AND   SUCCESS.        191 

Westmacott  completely  foiled  this  stratagem.  The 
enemy  found  themselves  under  a  heavy  cross-fire 
of  guns,  Maxims,  and  musketry,  and  were  driven 
back  with  a  loss  estimated  at  from  three  hundred 
to  four  hundred  men.  By  the  time  the  36th  Sikhs 
and  i/srd  Gurkhas  reached  Galai  Khel,  they  had 
exhausted  their  pouch  ammunition,  and  had  to 
replenish  it  from  the  reserve. 

From  Galai  Khel  the  track  ascended,  crossing 
ridge  after  ridge  covered  with  prickly  scrub  jungle. 
The  track  was  rough  and  narrow,  and  two  lines  of 
mules  could  with  difficulty  march  abreast.  The 
column  thus  strung  out  to  a  great  length.  The 
retirement  was  carried  out  by  battalions,  which 
alternately  took  up  successive  positions,  and  covered 
each  other's  withdrawal.  The  enemy  never  relaxed 
the  rigour  of  their  pursuit,  and,  as  darkness  came 
on,  advanced  into  the  open  and  came  to  close 
quarters.  General  Westmacott,  seeing  that  it  was 
impossible  to  reach  the  Lakarai  Kotal  before  night- 
fall, halted  his  force  for  the  nio^ht  on  a  ridee  runninof 
right  across  the  line  of  retirement.  The  enemy 
boldly  charged  this  line,  and  got  within  a  few  yards 
of  the  King's  Own  Scottish  Borderers  and  3rd 
Gurkhas,  but  were  driven  back  with  heavy  loss. 
Here  Lieutenant  West  of  the  3rd  Gurkhas  was 
killed.  He  was  an  officer  who  had  done  good 
service,  and  distinguished  himself  on  several 
occasions  during  the  expedition.  The  surround- 
ing heights  were  held  throughout  the  night  by  the 
picquets    of   the    3rd    Brigade.     The    4th    Brigade 


192  JOHN  IIAUCsIITON. 

Spent  a  comfortless  night  without  food,  water,  and 
blankets,  as  their  baggage  had  gone  on  to  the  spot 
where  the  3rd  Brigade  had  bivouacked,  half  a  mile 
west  of  the  Lakarai  Kotal.  Here  a  small  force 
from  Swaikot,  under  General  Hammond,  with  eight 
doolies  and  three  hundred  doolie-bearers,  joined  the 
column.  The  doolie-bearers  of  General  Yeatman- 
Biggs'  Division  had  completely  broken  down,  and 
for  the  last  two  days  most  of  the  sick  and  wounded 
had  been  carried  by  their  soldier  comrades. 

At  daybreak  on  December  14  the  retirement 
recommenced  in  the  same  order  as  on  the  13th. 
The  3rd  Brigade  met  with  no  opposition,  and  on 
arrival  at  Mamanai,  on  the  right  bank  of  the  Bara 
river,  where  it  encamped,  sent  back  water  to  the 
4th  Brigade,  which,  as  far  as  the  Lakarai  Kotal,  was 
pursued  as  vigorously  by  the  Afridis  as  on  the 
previous  day.  It  was  about  10.30  a.m.  when  the 
baggage  of  the  4th  Brigade  got  under  way.  As 
on  the  previous  day,  the  battalions  retired  succes- 
sively from  position  to  position,  chiefly  along  the 
northern  spurs,  which  commanded  the  route.  Once 
the  Lakarai  Kotal  was  passed  the  pursuit  was 
practically  abandoned. 

Thus  ended  the  march  down  the  Bara  valley, 
one  which,  for  hardship  and  hard  fighting,  has  scarce 
an  equal  in  the  annals  of  frontier  warfare.  (That 
which  approaches  nearest  to  it  is  Sir  Robert  Sale's 
march  from  Kabul  to  Jalalabad  in  October,  1841.) 
The  casualties  were  considerable.* 

*  Casualties  :  Lieutenant  West  killed,  7  officers  and  native  officers 


THE    CHIEF'S   APPROVAL.  193 

On  the  following  day  (December  15)  Sir  William 
Lockhart  issued  an  order  specially  complimenting 
General  Westmacott  and  his  troops  on  the  work 
that  they  had  done;  and  on  December  22  he  con- 
veyed to  the  whole  Division  the  thanks  of  the  Com- 
mander-in-Chief in  India,  Sir  George  White,  and  to 
Brigadier-General  Westmacott  the  Chief's  apprecia- 
tion of  his  "  able  generalship  and  soldierly  discharge 
of  his  duty." 

severely  wounded,  31  non-commissioned  officers  and  men  killed,  126 
wounded  (28  dangerously,  68  severely,  30  slightly).  The  36!;h  Sikhs 
had  4  killed  and  21  wounded  (3  dangerously,  7  severely).  On  them 
and  the  3rd  Gurkhas  the  brunt  of  the  fighting  fell.  Lieutenant  West 
was  afterwards  specially  mentioned  in  despatches,  with  Colonel 
Haughton,  as  one  who,  had  he  survived,  would  have  been  recom- 
mended to  Her  Majesty  for  reward. 


194  JOHN  IIAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER    XI. 

REST    AND    DEATH. 

"  Greater  love  hath  no  man  than  this,  that  a  man  lay  down  his  life 
for  his  friends." — St.  John  xv.  13. 

"  No  welcome  greeted  our  return 
Nor  clang  of  martial  tread, 
But  all  were  dumb  and  hushed  as  death 
Before  the  mighty  dead." 

Aytoun's  Lays. 

The  period  which  now  followed  was  one  of  rest  for 
the  2nd  Division.  It  fell  to  the  lot  of  the  ist 
Division  (Symons')  and  Hammond's  Brigade  to 
overrun  the  Bazar  valley  and  reoccupy  the  Khyber. 
When  General  Yeatman-Biggs  was  invalided  about 
December  22,  Sir  Power  Palmer  assumed  command 
of  the  2nd  Division.  General  Westmacott's  Brigade 
remained  encamped  at  Mamanai ;  and  there  it  was 
joined  by  the  2nd  Battalion  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry, 
sent  up  to  take  the  place  of  the  Northampton  regi- 
ment. Nothing  of  importance  happened  until  the 
ill-fated,  and,  as  many  think,  ill-advised  raid  into  the 
Kajurai  plain  led  to  the  reverse  in  the  Shinkamar 
pass,  and  to — saddest  of  all — the  death  of  Lieut. - 
Colonel  Haughton  and  his  Adjutant,  Lieutenant 
Turing,  men  who  had  faced  death  and  survived 
danger  so  often  in  the  last  three  months,  only  to 
lose  their  lives  in  a  fruitless  little  foray,  just  when 


HIS   IMPRESSIONS   OF  "  TIP  AH."  1 95 

well-earned  rest  and  reward  seemed  within  their 
reach.  And,  indeed,  they  won  their  rest  and  reward 
— the  rest  that  nothing  on  earth  can  break,  and,  as 
their  heritage  of  reward,  the  grief  of  the  Army 
and  the  Nation.  When  the  news  of  Haughton's 
death  spread  through  India,  it  is  not  too  much 
to  say  that  every  Englishman's  heart  mourned  for 
his  loss. 

In  the  last  few  days  of  his  life  Colonel  Haughton 
did  place  on  record  some  of  the  impressions  which 
the  Tirah  expedition  had  made  on  his  mind.  In  a 
letter  dated  January  20,  1898,  he  says — 

"  I  think  much  of  the  criticism  in  the  papers  on  this 
campaign  has  been  very  unfair.  Of  course  there  have 
been  mistakes  made  (even  Napoleon  and  Wellington 
made  mistakes  in  every  campaign),  and  though  there  may 
be  some  blame  due,  it  must  be  remembered  that  there 
were  great  and  unusual  difficulties.  The  country  was 
absolutely  unknown  except  from  hearsay ;  it  would  be 
very  hard  to  find  a  more  difficult  country  to  operate  in  ; 
and  finally,  owing  to  so  many  disturbances  (in  Tochi, 
Malakand,  etc.),  there  was  great  difficulty  in  getting  the 
large  amount  of  transport  required,  and  it  was  not  good 
when  finally  obtained.  The  delay  in  getting  transport 
delayed  the  expedition,  and  consequently  we  were  very 
much  pressed  for  time,  and  not  able  to  overrun  the  country 
as  thoroughly  as  we  otherwise  should.  I  think,  too,  that 
things  would  have  gone  better  had  Sir  William  Lockhart 
been  in  better  health.  To  talk  of  '  disasters '  and  such- 
like is  ridiculous.  The  troops  did  everything  possible,  and 
the  enemy  could  never  prevent  us  going  where  we  liked, 
and  doing  whatsoever  we  chose  to  do.  That  the  enemy 
would    not    fight   was    not   our    fault,   as,   with   a    friendly 


196  JOHN  H AUG  1 1  TON. 

Afghanistan  close  to  them,  they  could  always  seek  safety 
for  themselves,  their  families,  and  their  cattle  across  the 
border." 

A  much  more  detailed  review  than  this,  written 
by  him  on  January  16,  1898,  to  General  Sir  Charles 
Gough,  I  have  given  in  an  Appendix  (A).  Despite  all 
that  the  Press  has  written  on  the  subject,  this  review 
is  the  most  valuable  piece  of  criticism  on  the  Tirah 
expedition  that  has  yet  appeared  in  print ;  for  it  is 
written  by  a  man  who  saw  all  with  his  own  eyes, 
who  had  a  very  sound  judgment,  and  whose  eminent 
success  and  known  sincerity  negatives  even  the 
suspicion  of  an  arriere-pensde. 

I  have  received  accounts  of  the  Shinkamar  affair 
from  three  or  four  officers  (of  different  corps)  who 
either  took  part  in  it,  or  were  in  a  position  to  know 
very  well  what  did  occur.  I  shall  base  my  account 
on  theirs. 

The  raid  on  the  Kajurai  plain  was  a  combined 
movement  from  the  four  Brigades,  the  headquarters 
of  which  were  respectively  at  Bara,  Mamanai,  Jamrud, 
and  AH  Masjid.  The  object  was  to  seize  the  Afridi 
cattle  grazing  on  that  plain,  and  drive  the  Afridis  out 
of  it.  It  was  thought  that  this  would  have  a  salutary 
effect  on  them.  Unfortunately  the  plan  resulted  in 
a  complete  yf<^j^^.  We  played  into  the  hands  of  the 
Afridis.  There  is  very  little  doubt  that  they  had 
full  information  of  what  was  going  to  be  done,  and 
laid  their  plans  accordingly.  They  removed  their 
cattle  and  concentrated  their  whole  strength  against 


PLANS   FOR    THE   RAID.  197 

our  small  column,  with  the  result  which  is  about  to 
be  made  known. 

On  or  about  January  27  the  General  Officers 
commanding  the  3rd  and  4th  Brigades,  with 
their  Staff  and  Political  officers,  met  at  Gandao  to 
discuss  the  projected  raid.  They  each  sent  in  their 
reports,  and  in  due  course  orders  were  received. 
The  3rd  Brigade  was  at  Bara,  fifteen  miles  north- 
east of  the  Shinkamar  pass,  and  the  4th  at 
Mamanai,  seven  miles  to  the  south-east  of  it. 
What  orders  the  3rd  Brigade  received  are  of  no 
concern,  for  the  4th  Brigade  saw  no  sign  of  either 
that  or  of  the  ist  and  2nd  Brigades  throughout  the 
day.  The  orders  sent  to  Mamanai  on  January  28 
were,  briefly,  to  send  out  an  adequate  force  of  infantry 
with  guns  early  on  January  29,  to  occupy  the  Kotal 
of  the  Shinkamar  pass  by  10  a.m.,  to  examine  certain 
caves  in  the  vicinity  of  that  pass,  and  communicate, 
if  possible,  with  the  3rd  Brigade  column  from  Bara, 
and  to  commence  the  retirement  to  camp  at  i  p.m. 
General  Westmacott  accordingly  selected  Lieut.- 
Colonel  Seppings,  of  the  King's  Own  Yorkshire 
Light  Infantry,  for  the  command,  with  Major  Rose, 
of  the  3rd  Gurkhas,  as  his  staff  officer,  and  placed 
the  following  troops  under  him  : — Two  guns  No.  5 
Bombay  Mountain  Battery,  under  Lieutenant  Massie; 
427  rifles  of  the  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry,  under 
Major  Barter;  200  rifles  36th  Sikhs,  under  Lieut.- 
Colonel  J.  Haughton.  General  Westmacott  further 
sent  a  detachment  of  the  3rd  Gurkhas  out  towards 
the  Lakarai  Kotal,  so  as  to  check  any  attempt  of 


198  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

the  Afridis  to  come  in  on  the  left  flank  and  rear 
of  the  column,  and  occupied  the  hills  from  west 
to  east  on  the  right  of  the  pass  with  some  of  the 
Bombay  Pioneers. 

The  force  under  Colonel  Seppings  started  from 
Mamanai  at  5  a.m.  on  the  29th.*  The  36th  Sikhs 
formed  the  advanced  guard  under  Colonel  Haughton. 
When  the  foot  of  the  pass  was  reached,  at  7.30  a.m., 
Afridis  were  seen  retiring  up  it,  driving  their  cattle 
before  them.  These  were  refus^ees  from  the  caves 
on  the  south  side  of  the  pass.  A  company  of  the 
Yorkshire  Light  Infantry  occupied  a  knoll,  and 
opened  fire  on  the  retiring  Afridis,  while  another 
company  was  sent  to  occupy  and  hold  the  heights 
on  the  right  (or  east)  of  the  Kotal.  At  the  same 
time  Colonel  Haughton  detaching  one  or  two  of  his 
companies  to  scale  and  hold  the  heights  on  the  left 
(or  west)  of  the  pass,  himself  led  the  central  attack 
straight  up  to  the  Kotal.  No  opposition  worth 
speaking  of  was  offered.  The  guns  were  left  at 
the  mouth  of  the  pass,  with  half  a  company  of  the 
Yorkshire  Light  Infantry  as  escort.  It  seems  that 
the  knoll  already  mentioned  as  occupied  by  a 
company  of  the  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry  would 
have  made  an  excellent  position  for  a  covering 
battery ;  but    no    such    use  was  made  of  it.      Half 

*  I  find  in  one  report  the  following  remark:  "The  first  error  of 
the  day  was  visible  at  9  a.m.,  when  we  saw  their  route  marked  by 
burning  villages,  thereby  calling  the  country  to  arms.  This  should 
have  been  done,  of  course,  on  the  way  home."  What  was  burnt 
appears  to  have  been  Afridi  property  found  in  some  caves  near  the 
entrance  to  the  Shinkamar  pass.  A  company  of  the  Yorkshire  Light 
Infantry  was  directed  to  burn  these  things  about  8  a.m. 


THE   ENEMY  SEE    THEIR   CHANCE.  1 99 

a  company  of  the  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry  was 
sent  to  hold  a  point  halfway  up  the  heights  on 
the  left  of  the  pass.  The  remainder  of  the  York- 
shire Light  Infantry  was  held  in  reserve  behind 
the  knoll. 

Such,  as  far  as  can  be  gathered,  was  the  dis- 
position of  Colonel  Seppings'  force  between  10  and 
1 1  a.m.  No  sign  was  to  be  seen  of  any  body  of 
troops  from  the  3rd  Brigade.  The  caves  beyond 
the  pass  were,  if  possible,  to  be  visited.  Colonel 
Seppings  asked  Colonel  Haughton  by  heliograph 
if  he  could  do  so  within  the  time,  i.e.  so  as  not 
to  delay  the  retirement  beyond  i  p.m.  Colonel 
Haughton  at  once  undertook  to  do  it,  and  started 
off,  directing  his  Sikhs  to  follow  him.  He  did  not 
intend  that  order  to  apply  to  the  left  flanking 
company,  but  that  company  understood  it  so,  and 
followed  him,  and  hence  arose  all  the  mischief. 
The  enemy  saw  their  chance,  seized  the  height 
vacated  by  that  company  of  Sikhs,  and  thereby  got 
command  of  the  top  of  the  Kotal  and  therefore  of 
the  main  line  of  retreat.  It  is  said  that  an  officer 
of  the  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry,  seeing  the  Sikhs 
leave  their  post,  foresaw  the  possible  evil  result,  and 
suggested  that  he  should  take  his  company  up  and 
occupy  the  height  now  left  defenceless.  He  was 
told,  however,  to  stay  where  he  was.  Colonel 
Haughton  meantime  pushed  on  (picqueting  the 
heights  as  he  went)  to  the  caves  distant  from  one 
to  one  and  a  half  miles,  the  Afridi  men,  women,  and 
children  stampeding  out  of  them,  as  he  approached. 


200  JOHN  HAUGirrON. 

Having  examined  them,  he  commenced  his  retire- 
ment ;  and  though  followed  up,  reached  the  Kotal 
with  very  little  loss,  to  find  it  completely  com- 
manded by  the  fire  of  the  enemy  from  the  heights 
on  the  left.  This  was  about  i  p.m.  Colonel 
Seppings  meanwhile,  when  he  saw  the  Afridis  in 
dangerous  force  on  the  heights  on  the  left  of  the 
Kotal,  sent  two  companies  of  the  Yorkshire  Light 
Infantry  in  succession,  the  first  under  Lieutenant 
Dowdall,  the  second  under  Lieutenant  Walker,  to 
drive  them  out  and  reoccupy  the  heights.  This  was 
done,  and  the  Afridis  for  the  time  being  driven 
back  to  the  next  peak  or  ridge  some  two  or  three 
hundred  yards  distant ;  but  Lieutenants  Dowdall, 
Walker,  and  Hughes  were  killed,  and  the  two 
companies  so  hampered  with  their  killed  and 
wounded,  that  retirement  was  only  possible  by 
deserting  them,  and  that  of  course  could  not  for 
one  moment  be  thought  of.  The  orders  which  the 
36th  Sikhs  received,  on  returning  from  the  caves 
to  the  Kotal,  were  to  retire  and  take  up  a  fresh 
position,  so  as  to  cover  the  subsequent  retirement 
of  the  Yorkshire  Light  Infantry.  At  the  same  time 
two  fresh  companies  of  the  Yorkshire  Light  infantry 
were  sent  to  support  and  extricate  the  two  which 
were  holding  the  heights  on  the  left  of  the  Kotal. 
The  greater  part  of  the  Sikhs  fell  back,  as  ordered ; 
but  Haughton,  followed  by  Lieutenant  Turing  and 
four  or  five  of  his  men,  crossed  over  the  Kotal  to 
the  heights  on  the  left,  where  the  Yorkshires  were, 
to   help  them ;  for  he  saw  the  straits  they  were  in. 


HOW  HA  UGH  TON  DIED.  20T 

When  he  arrived,  the  tribesmen  were  crowding  in, 
around  and  within  a  few  yards  of  them, 

"  He  took  a  Lee-Metford  rifle  from  a  Yorkshireman, 
who  was  done  up,  and  kneeling  down  fired  a  few  rounds 
to  keep  the  Afridis  off.  About  this  time  Turing  was 
killed,  and  the  few  Sikhs  with  Haughton  were  either  killed 
or  wounded.  He  still  held  his  ground  to  cover  the 
retirement  of  the  wounded.  His  hat  was  knocked  off  by 
a  bullet,  but  he  only  said,  '  That  was  a  near  shave,'  and 
turning  to  Major  Barter,  told  him  not  to  expose  himself 
Jack  was  absolutely  fearless  under  fire,  and  would  hardly 
ever  condescend  to  take  cover.  He  then  seems  to  have 
been  left  with  very  few  men,  for  one  of  the  survivors,  a 
Yorkshireman,  reported  that  Jack,  seeing  that  there  was  very 
little  hope  of  successfully  retiring,  said,  '  Now,  my  men, 
let  us  fire  a  few  more  shots,  then  charge  the  enemy  and 
die  like  men.'  He  fired  some  five  more  rounds,  and  then 
fell  dead  with  a  bullet  in  his  brain."  * 

Such  is  one  account  of  Haughton's  last  moments. 
Another,  and  from  a  very  reliable  source,  runs 
thus  : — 

"  The  behaviour  of  all  troops  was  simply  magnificent. 
Neither  officer  nor  man  had  any  thought  of  self  They 
were  in  a  trap,  being  fired  upon  from  the  front  and  left. 
Every  wounded  man  was  picked  up,  and  very  slowly  the 
force  worked  its  way  down.  Haughton,  with  his  adjutant, 
Turing,  two  Sikhs,  and  two  men  of  the  King's  Own  York- 
shire Light  Infantry,  got  into  a  commanding  position  on 
the  left  and  covered  the  retirement,  the  two  officers  having 
both  picked  up  rifles  and  ammunition.  Of  those  two 
officers  and  four  men,  but  one  (a  Yorkshireman)  lived  to 
tell  the  tale.     Their  ammunition  was  running  out  ;  Turing 

*  Quoted  from  an  officer's  letter. 


202  JOHN  HAUGIirON. 

and  the  two  Sikhs  were  killed.  Haughton  told  the  Yorks 
lads  to  fix  bayonets,  and  said,  'We'll  shoot  away  the 
ammunition  we've  got,  and  then  show  them  how  British 
soldiers  die,'  He  was  immediately  afterwards  hit  with  a 
bullet  in  the  head,  just  behind  the  ear — absolutely  pain- 
less— and  he  fell,  like  the  grand  soldier  and  gentleman  he 
was,  in  endeavouring  to  save  others.  One  Yorkshireman 
succeeded  in  rejoining  his  corps.  The  enemy  sent  the 
body  to  Mamanai  un mutilated.  Few  men  have  served 
for  so  short  a  time  as  John  Haughton  had  with  the  Tirah 
Field  Force  and  so  completely  won  the  love  and  respect, 
and,  I  may  say,  admiration  of  all  of  us.  In  losing  him 
I  lost  a  very  dear  friend  and  comrade,  and  the  service  lost 
a  brilliant  soldier." 

To  return,  however,  to  the  hard-pressed  little 
force.  Colonel  Seppin^^s,  when  he  saw  the  diffi- 
culties of  his  position,  at  once  heliographed  to 
Mamanai,  and  got  a  prompt  reply  that  General 
Westmacott  was  on  his  way  to  help  him.  The 
retirement  went  on  gradually.  Not  a  wounded  man 
was  abandoned.  Some  dead  had  to  be  left,  but 
their  rifles  and  ammunition  were  carried  away.  We 
may  well  ask,  "  What,  all  this  time,  were  the  two 
guns  doing?"  They  are  not  even  mentioned  in 
one  of  the  six  printed  and  four  manuscript  accounts 
of  this  action  that  are  before  me.  They  seem  to 
have  been  badly  posted  at  first,  and  to  have  been 
of  very  little  use.  When  the  enemy  were  firing  so 
close  on  our  troops  as  to  be  almost  intermingled 
with  them,  the  guns  dare  not  fire.  The  command- 
ing position  held  by  the  enemy  on  the  left  compelled 
the  Yorkshire   Light   Infantry   to  leave  the   usual 


WESTMACOTT    TO    THE    RELIEF.  2O3 

route,  and  to  retire  across  a  succession  of  knolls  on 
the  right  of  the  pass.  The  one  and  a  half  com- 
panies of  that  regiment  which  had  been  originally 
posted  to  guard  the  pass  held  their  positions  to  the 
end  and  covered  the  retirement.  Below,  in  the 
plain  at  the  mouth  of  the  pass,  a  position  was  taken 
up — presumably  by  the  36th  Sikhs  and  two  guns — 
through  which  the  parties  of  the  Yorkshire  Light 
I  nfantry,  carrying  and  guarding  the  wounded,  passed ; 
and  to  their  aid  arrived  General  Westmacott,  about 
4  p.m.,  with  two  guns,  two  hundred  King's  Own 
Scottish  Borderers,  and  one  hundred  of  the  3rd 
Gurkhas.  By  4.30  the  last  of  the  troops  had  been 
extricated  from  the  pass,  and  the  whole  column 
then  fell  back  slowly  on  Mamanai,  General  West- 
macott himself,  as  usual,  being  with  the  rearmost 
troops.  Once  in  the  open,  the  Afridi  pursuit  slack- 
ened. Camp  was  reached  at  7  p.m.  The  36th 
Sikhs  were  brought  out  of  action  by  Second- 
Lieutenant  Van  Someren,  who,  on  this  as  on  other 
occasions,  proved  himself  a  fine  young  soldier. 

Except  in  that  one  struggle  to  the  bitter  end,  in 
which  Colonel  Haughton,  Lieutenant  Turing,  and 
two  sepoys  fell,  the  losses  of  the  36th  Sikhs  were 
trifling.  The  brunt  of  the  fighting  fell  on  the 
Yorkshire  Light  Infantry;  and  new  as  they  were 
to  the  work,  they  bore  themselves  most  manfully. 
They  lost,  in  addition  to  the  three  officers  already 
mentioned  as  killed,  Major  Earle,  Captain  Marrable, 
and  Lieutenant  Hall  wounded,  twenty-six  men 
killed,  and    thirty-two    men   wounded.      A    soldier 


204  JOHN  HA  UGH  TON. 

made  prisoner  by  the  Afridis  on  this  occasion  was 
subsequently  returned  uninjured,  as  Sergeant 
Walker,  who  was  made  prisoner  during  the  Bara 
valley  march,  had  also  been. 

General  Westmacott  decided  not  to  take  any 
active  steps  to  recover  the  dead  on  January  30,  as 
he  did  not  consider  the  force  at  his  disposal 
sufficient.  He  determined  to  make  a  private  effort 
to  recover  the  bodies  of  Colonel  Haughton  and 
Lieutenant  Turing.  A  little  incident  that  had 
happened  a  week  before  contributed  to  this  end. 
It  chanced  that  a  party  of  Gurkhas  had  ambuscaded 
some  Pathan  "  snipers,"  killed  one  of  them,  and 
captured  the  body.  General  Westmacott  put  the 
body  in  a  doolie  just  as  it  was,  and  sent  it  with  all 
respect  to  the  nearest  Afridi  village,  to  be  handed 
over  to  the  relations  of  the  deceased.  He  at  the 
same  time  sent  a  message  to  the  effect  that  this  is 
the  way  we  always  treated  the  dead,  and  the  way 
they  ought  to  be  treated.  This  judicious  act  bore 
good  fruit,  as  will  be  shown.  On  January  30  the 
Political  officer  attached  to  General  Westmacott's 
Staff  sent  some  of  his  men  out  to  the  Afridis,  and 
said  that  General  Westmacott  was  very  anxious  that 
the  dead  should  be  respected,  and  above  all,  that 
the  body  of  Colonel  Haughton  should  be  treated 
with  the  honour  that  so  brave  a  soldier  deserved. 
The  Afridis,  remembering  with  gratitude,  as  we 
have  good  reason  to  believe,  the  respect  with 
which  General  Westmacott  had  treated  their  dead, 
placed    the  body  of  Colonel    Haughton  (also  that 


MONUMENT   IN    PESHAWAR   CEMETERY. 


AFRIDIS   RESPECT   THE   DEAD.  205 

of  a  British  soldier,  mistaking  it  for  that  of 
Lieutenant  Turing)  on  a  charpoy,  and  sent  it  in 
to  Mamanai  camp.  It  was  sent  into  Peshawar  the 
next  day,  and  was  buried  on  January  31  with  full 
military  honours  in  the  cemetery  there,  every  officer 
off  duty  in  the  garrison  attending  ;  for  all  wished  to 
do  him  honour.  Over  his  grave  now  stands  the 
monument  erected  to  him  by  his  brother  officers  of 
the  35th  and  36th  Sikhs.  Just  a  year  after  his 
death  some  verses  appeared  in  the  Pioneer  to  his 
memory,  and  to  the  honour  of  those  who  fought 
with  him.     I  have  given  them  in  an  Appendix  (B). 

On  January  31  General  Westmacott,  having 
received  reinforcements  from  Bara,  took  out  a  strong 
force  and  brought  in  twenty-two  dead.  Not  one 
body  had  been  mutilated.  The  Afridis  made  some 
resistance,  and,  as  usual,  followed  up  the  retirement. 
There  were  a  few  casualties. 

As  far  as  the  36th  Sikhs  were  concerned,  the 
Tirah  expedition  was  now  at  an  end.  On  the 
Samana  that  regiment  had  lost  one  British  officer 
(Lieutenant  Blair)*  very  severely  wounded,  twenty- 
one  men  killed,  and  one  native  officer  and  forty-five 
men  wounded.  During  the  operations  in  Tirah  it 
lost  two  British  officers  killed  and  seven  wounded, 
fifteen  men  killed  and  fifty-seven  wounded. 

*  "  At  Satara,  on  the  29th  July,  1900,  of  cholera,  Captain  A.  K. 
Blair,  36th  Sikhs,  when  employed  on  Famine  Duty.  (Deeply  regretted 
by  all  ranks  of  his  regiment.)  " — Obituary  Notice  in  Pioneer  Mail, 
August  10,  1900. 


206  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 


CHAPTER   XII. 
l'envoi. 

"  If  chance  thy  house 
Salute  thee  with  a  father's  honoured  name, 
Go,  call  thy  sons,  instruct  them  what  a  debt 
They  owe  their  ancestors." 

Akenside. 

"  Salus  populi  siiprcma  lex.  A  nation  such  as  ours,  nurtured  in 
freedom,  ought  to  rouse  itself."— Dr.  Warre,  at  the  R.U.S.I.,  June  27, 
I  goo. 

"Next  to  the  pain  I  felt  when  one  of  my  sons  was  rejected  for  the 
army,  one  of  the  saddest  moments  of  my  life  was  when  the  time  came 
for  my  own  superannuation." — Remark  of  a  Swiss  officer  quoted  by 
Mr.  G.  G.  Coulton,  National  Revie^u^  July,  1900,  p.  842. 

With  the  experiences  and  memories  of  the  South 
African  War  so  present  in  the  minds  of  all,  it  is 
difficult  to  carry  readers  back  even  to  so  recent  a 
campaign  as  that  of  1897-98  against  the  Orakzais 
and  Afridis  of  Tirah.  Yet  so  close,  from  certain 
points  of  view,  are  the  resemblances  between  the 
incidents  of  the  several  wars  and  expeditions  in 
which  her  Majesty's  forces  have  been  engaged 
during  the  last  half-century — while,  on  the  other 
hand,  they  are  marked  by  wide  distinctions  of 
country,  climate,  and  circumstance — that  comments 
and  criticisms  suggested  by  one  are  often  equally 
applicable  to  the  others.     If  time  and  opportunity 


THE   LESSONS   OF   THE    IV A R.  207 

enabled  us  to  carry  back  our  studies  of  national 
warfare  and  national  thouorht  and  feelincf  to  the 
days  of  the  Saxon  and  Dane,  of  the  Conquest,  and 
of  the  wars  with  France  and  Scotland,  we  should 
find,  if  not  "  the  man  in  the  street,"  at  all  events 
peer  and  prelate,  knight  and  burgher,  artisan  and 
peasant,  discoursing  on  "  the  lessons  of  the  war." 
In  those  days  there  was  no  "  Daily  Press."  It 
is  the  nineteenth  century,  with  its  steam,  electricity, 
and  universal  education,  that  has  fostered  the  habit 
of  focussing  public  opinion  in  a  leading  article.  The 
role  of  military  critic  is  only  one  of  the  many  that 
the  versatile  journalist  of  to-day  is,  often  with  a 
minimum  of  qualification,  ready  to  assume  at  a 
moment's  notice.  Could  he  in  that  role  only 
call  into  play  that  journalistic  faculty  which  Lord 
Curzon  of  Kedleston  once  so  happily  termed  "  the 
intelligent  anticipation  of  events  before  they  occur," 
he  would  be  an  invaluable  auxiliary  of  the  Intelli- 
gence Department,  and  of  every  General  in  the 
field.  Unfortunately  his  is  the  belated  and  dog- 
matic wisdom  that  follows  the  event. 

"  The  lessons  of  the  war  "  has  become  a  stock 
expression.  The  accepted  popular  belief  is  that 
these  "lessons"  are  to  be  taken  to  heart  by  the 
War  Office  and  the  Army  alone.  They  are  appli- 
cable, rather,  to  the  great  British  Public  itself;  for 
with  it  largely  rests  the  making  of  the  Army.  It 
is  in  the  lack  of  education  and  training,  as  well  as 
in  the  prejudice  or  indifference  of  the  people,  that 
certain  causes  of  defect  in  our  troops  are  inherent. 


2o8  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

Popular  feeling  has  till  to-day  been  averse  to  a 
National  Army,  and  the  popular  life  has  for  decades 
been  no  school  for  soldiers — least  of  all  for  the 
soldiers  that  the  Empire  now  requires,  soldiers 
who  can  serve  and  fight  in  any  clime,  against  any 
foe,  and  under  any  conditions.  And  if  we  may 
believe  Philip  de  Commines,  this  same  unreadiness 
and  these  same  causes  thereof  were  as  inherent  in 
the  English  people  of  the  fourteenth  and  fifteenth 
centuries  as  they  are  in  the  British  Nation  of  to-day. 
The  pride  with  which  we,  whether  individually  or 
as  an  Empire,  look  back,  be  it  for  centuries  or  for 
decades,  on  the  military  skill  and  prowess  of  our 
ancestors,  will  always  be  tempered  by  the  sense  of 
the  mistakes  that  were  made.  That  is  inevitable — 
alike  for  the  past,  and  for  future  generations.  The 
South  African  War  promises  to  do  more  to  remove 
some  of  these  defects  than  all  the  efforts  of  experts, 
theorists,  critics,  and  reformers,  be  they  statesmen, 
soldiers,  or  journalists,  during  the  last  half-century. 
We  are  now  within  a  measurable  distance  of  be- 
coming a  "  Nation  in  Arms."  The  country  is  alive 
to  the  need  of  a  more  or  less  universal  military 
education  ;  and  a  scheme  of  Army  reorganization 
based  on  that  principle,  and  having  in  view  home 
defence,  may  be  reasonably  anticipated,  provided 
the  opportunity  is  not  let  slip.  The  foreign  ill-will 
which  this  war  has  evoked  should  be  a  warning  to 
the  Nation  to  make  itself  strong  for  defence ;  and, 
as  every  soldier  knows,  defence  means  power  of 
offence.    In  July,  1900,  we  had  about  three  hundred 


DR.    WARRE'S   LECTURE.  209 

thousand  men  fighting  on  foreign  shores,  at  an 
average  distance  of  some  five  thousand  miles  from 
their  base.  The  known  history  of  the  world  records 
no  such  feat.  It  is  a  proud  thought,  but  again  the 
caution  "lest  we  forget"  looms  before  us.  As 
the  South  African  War  has  laid  bare  our  defects 
in  military  training,  in  mobility,  intelligence,  and 
scouting,  and  in  capacity  for  home  defence,  so 
Tirah  taught  us  that  our  youth,  born  and  bred  in 
towns  and  plains,  are  no  match,  without  proper 
training  and  development,  for  mountaineers.  This, 
from  the  military  and  national  points  of  view,  and 
apart  from  questions  of  organization  and  equipment, 
is  the  pith  of  the  lessons  learnt  in  Tirah  and  South 
Africa. 

Dr.  Warre's  lecture  at  the  Royal  United 
Service  Institution  on  June  27,  and  the  keen 
comment  to  which  it  gave  rise  both  in  the  Press 
and  on  Public  School  Speech-days,  marked,  there  is 
reason  to  believe,  an  era  in  the  military  education 
of  the  country.  It  may  be  that  the  Head-master 
of  Eton  elaborated  his  scheme  overmuch,  but  in 
principle  it  is  sound,  and  (as  he  himself  stated) 
approved  by  eighty  -  three  of  the  hundred  and 
two  members  of  the  Conference  of  Head-masters. 
It  met  with  a  very  favourable  reception  at  the 
Royal  United  Service  Institution.  Fears  of  War 
Office  interference,  and  lest  "  public  schools  become 
public  camps,"  have  been  expressed,  but  do  not 
appear  to  be  well  founded. 

The  keynote  of  the  Public  School  Speech-days 


2IO  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

in  1900  has  been  pride  in  the  number  of  old  boys 
that  each  School  has  sent  to  serve  the  Empire  in 
South  Africa,  in  China,  and  in  Ashantee.* 

That  pride  has  not  been  least,  or  with  least 
cause,  displayed  by  the  two  Schools,  Shrewsbury 
and  Uppingham,  with  which,  specially  and  appro- 
priately, I  have  been  privileged  to  associate  this 
book.  A  cadet  corps  two  hundred  strong  paraded 
at  Uppingham  on  the  speech-day  of  1900;  and 
Shrewsbury  means  to  have  its  own  corps  at  an 
early  date.  May  both  Schools  be  fruitful  of  good 
soldiers  f  in  the  future  as  they  have  been  in  the 
past ! 

*  It  is  a  pride  that  animates  high  and  low,  and  which  pubHc 
schools  share  with  the  humbler  scenes  of  primaiy  education.  When 
the  Duke  of  York,  in  July  last,  opened  the  Poor  Law  Schools  Exhibi- 
tion, he  stated,  amid  loud  applause,  that  361  old  Poor  Law  School-boys 
were  serving  their  country  in  South  Africa.  When  military  training 
in  public  schools  is  advocated,  let  us  bear  in  mind  that  it  is  none  the 
less  necessary  and  useful  in  primary  schools,  Board,  Voluntary,  or 
Poor  Law.  Not  the  least  argument  in  support  of  this  military  training 
in  all  boys'  schools  is  the  employment  that  it  will  afford  to  retired 
non-commissioned  officers  and  soldiers  of  good  character.  The  Duke 
of  York's  and  Royal  Hibernian  Schools  are  examples  of  what  dis- 
cipline and  drill,  combined  with  ordinary  education,  does  for  boys. 

t  Major  Sir  Claude  MacDonald,  as  already  stated  in  the  Preface, 
is  an  old  Uppingham  boy.  A  year  that  has  witnessed  the  defences 
of  Kimberley,  Ladysmith,  and  Mafeking,  must  not  forget  that  of 
Peking.  The  three  first  waged  war  in  a  fair  and  open  field,  with  an 
enemy  that  conformed  to  most  of  the  recognized  conventions  of 
civilized  war.  The  last  faced  a  foe  that  knew  no  mercy,  its  sole 
defence  a  wall,  hemmed  in  on  all  sides  but  one  by  Chinese  dwellings, 
and  commanded  by  the  great  wall  of  the  city  at  a  range  of  a  few 
hundred  yards.  The  British  Legation  at  Peking  was  as  indefensible 
as  the  Gurkha  barracks  at  Charikar.  In  it  that  brave  soldier  and 
staunch  diplomat,  Sir  Claude  MacDonald,  kept  the  Chinese  hordes 
at  bay  for  weeks,  while  the  Concert  of  Europe  trifled  with  the  lives 
of  their  envoys  and  their  escorts.  At  the  end  of  March,  1S98,  the  day 
after  Russia  occupied  Port  Arthur,  I  dined  at  the  Legation  at  Peking. 
Dr.  Morrison,  the  well-known  and  capable  correspondent  of  the  Ti?nes, 


PRACTICAL  SOLDIERING.  211 

Some  knowledge  of  practical  soldiering  is  in  these 
days  essential  for  every  citizen.  Into  whatever 
line  of  life  a  youth  may  go — Politics,  Science,  Law, 
Medicine,  Commerce,  Journalism,  not  to  mention  the 
Army  and  the  Navy  (naval  brigades  take  part  fre- 
quently in  operations  on  land) — 'that  knowledge  will 
stand  him  in  good  stead.  The  power  of  the  pulpit, 
also,  will  profit  by  it.  It  should  be  specially  noted 
that  in  the  South  African  War  the  casualties  among 
the  officers  have,  in  proportion  to  the  numbers 
engaged,  been  nearly  three  times  as  great  as  those 
among  the  non-commissioned  officers  and  men. 
We  look  to  our  Public  Schools  to  prepare  for  the 
service  of  the  nation  a  strong  Reserve  of  Officers, 
sufficient  to  replace  the  heavy  losses  which  ex- 
perience teaches  us  to  expect  in  our  future  wars. 

The  question  has  been  raised  whether  military 
training  in  Public  Schools  should  be  compulsory  or 
voluntary.  In  the  Middle  Ages  the  athletic  and 
martial  education  of  the  youth  of  the  land  was  all- 
important.  "  Letters  "  were  of  little  account.  To- 
day the  literary  and  athletic  training  is  well  main- 
tained ;  the  martial  has  fallen  into  neglect.  The 
curriculum  of  a  Public  School  is  not  arranged  by  the 
authorities  in  consultation  with  parents  ;  but  it  is  so 
framed  as  to  meet  the  views  and  wishes  of  parents 

and  Lieut. -Colonel  G.  F.  Browne,  Military  Attache,  were  of  the  party. 
After  dinner  Sir  Claude  brought  out  and  showed  us  the  original  of 
General  Gordon's  last  telegram  from  Khartoum.  We  little  ihouglit, 
as  we  examined  it  with  keen  interest,  that  before  the  century  had 
closed  the  name  of  Claude  Mac  Donald  would  have  so  narrowly 
escaped  being  written  side  by  side  with  that  of  Charles  Gordon  on 
the  roll  of  England's  political  martyrs. 


212  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

regarding  the  education  of  their  sons.  The  best 
and  final  test  of  soundness  of  system  is  popularity. 
Military  training  appears  to  be  at  the  present  time 
popular,  both  with  masters,  parents,  and  boys. 
There  is,  then,  no  obvious  reason  for  placing 
martial  on  a  different  footing  from  literary  and 
athletic  education. 

The  needs  of  the  age  demand  a  "  Nation  in 
Arms."  Such  is  every  Continental  Nation  ;  none 
more  so  than  the  Swiss,  whose  National  Schools  sow 
the  seeds  of  drill  and  discipline,  and  amongst  whom 
to  be  rejected  for  military  service  is  a  disgrace.* 

In  Great  Britain  (as,  indeed,  in  other  countries), 
the  need  for  a  military  education  has  a  twofold 
bearing.  Firstly,  every  citizen  should  be  qualified 
to  render  the  State  military  service.  Under  Spartan 
rule  the  man  unfit  to  do  that  was  deemed  unworthy 
to  live.  In  this  less  exacting  age  physical  unfitness 
frees  a  man  from  the  obligation  to  serve,  but,  in 
Switzerland  at  least,  rightly  imposes  the  obligation 
to  pay.  We  suffer  in  Great  Britain  from  the  burden 
of  a  class  known  as  the  "unemployed  ;  "  a  class  that 
neither  works  nor  pays,  and  which  is  by  no  means 
confined  to  the  "  submerged  tenth."  On  such  some 
form  of  National  Service,  personal  or  pecuniary, 
should  be  made  compulsory. 

Secondly,  there  are  in  the  country  two  classes, 
who  are  recruited  very  largely  from  the  ranks  of  our 
Public  Schools,  to  whom  some  practical  knowledge 

*   Vide  '*  A  Strong  Army  in  a  Free  State,"  by  G.  G.  Coulton,  p.  38  ; 
and  National  Revie-ij,  July,  1900,  p.  842. 


MILITARY  HISTORY  AND    TRAINING.  213 

of  military  training  and  history  is  of  the  highest 
importance.  These  are  our  statesmen  and  our 
journalists.  I  include  under  the  term  "  states- 
men "  all  who  adopt  politics  as  a  profession  or  as  a 
pastime,  and  under  the  term  "journalist"  all  who 
wield  the  pen.  The  name  of  the  latter  is  legion, 
and  their  responsibility  great.  In  that  they  under- 
take to  guide  and  form  the  opinion  of  the  people, 
they  ought  to  possess  some  adequate  knowledge  of 
one  of  the  most  vital  of  the  many  subjects  with 
which  they  are  called  upon  to  deal,  viz.  the  military 
history,  power,  and  organization  of  the  empire.  It 
is  this  knowledge,  as  well  as  the  technical  instruction 
that  a  soldier  requires,  that  our  Public  Schools  may 
with  advantage  endeavour  to  inculcate  in  the  youth 
of  the  country  ;  and  no  one  surely  will  contend 
that,  in  laying  the  foundation  of  this  knowledge, 
they  are  stepping  outside  their  sphere.  Of  the 
military  and  naval  history  of  his  own  country 
(not  so  much  of  Greece  and  Rome)  every  school- 
boy should  acquire  some  general  notion  ;  while  in 
the  discipline  of  military  training  we  have  an  instru- 
ment of  physical,  mental,  and  moral  culture  such  as 
few,  if  any,  other  branches  of  instruction  afford. 

The  conditions  of  modern  civilized  life  leave 
more  or  less  undeveloped  those  instincts  and  habits 
of  "outdoor"  or  "open-air"  observation  and  de- 
duction, and  that  resourcefulness  in  emergency, 
which  it  is  imperative  that  a  soldier  should  cultivate 
and  acquire.  In  men  of  sporting  proclivities  these 
qualities  are  to  some  extent  developed,  as  Colonel 


214  JOHN  IIAUGHTON. 

Alderson  has  pointed  out.  What  the  Pathan  learns 
on  his  mountain-side,  the  Boer  on  his  veldt,  the 
Colonial  on  the  ranche,  the  prairie,  or  the  cattle-run, 
the  Red  Indian  and  the  backwoodsman  in  the  Far 
West,  and  the  savage  in  every  part  of  the  world — 
that  we  must  endeavour  to  inculcate  in  our  youth 
by  deliberate  education,  seeing  that  the  everyday 
life  of  Old  England  does  not  call  those  qualities  into 
play.*  There  appear  to  be  two  ways  of  doing 
this,  viz.  by  books  and  by  practical  outdoor  training. 
The  books  that  suggest  themselves  are  :  Baden- 
Powell's  "  Aids  to  Scouting  ;  "  f  the  works  of  Francis 
Parkman  and  Fenimore  Cooper,  "  Robbery  under 
Arms,"  "  Geoffrey  Hamlyn,"  and  other  good  Colonial 
books  ;  "  Sale's  Brigade  in  Afghanistan,"  by  Chap- 
lain-General Gleig  ;  "  Indian  Frontier  Warfare,"  by 
Major  G.  F.  Younghusband ;  "  Savage  Warfare," 
by  Captain  Peach  ;  Mr.  Fitchett's  works  ;  and  the 
memoirs  of  Harry  Lumsden,  John  Jacob,  John  Nichol- 
son, Herbert  Edwardes,  Reynell  Taylor,  Henry 
Lawrence,  Colin  Campbell,  Sydney  Cotton,  David 
Ochterlony,  and  other  famous  Indian  soldiers.  The 
knowledge  of  others  will  enable  them  to  greatly 
extend  this  list,  to  which  must  also  be  added  some 
of  the  recognized  manuals  of  military  instruction. 
The  outdoor  training  will  consist  in  the  practical 
application  of  the  knowledge  inculcated  in  these  and 
similar   books.     No   comprehensive   study    of   the 

*  See  Note  A  at  end  of  chapter. 

t  Army  headquarters  in  India  took  (in  July,  1900)  two  thousand 
copies  of  this  book  and  distributed  it  to  the  corps  in  the  Indian 
command. 


PRACTICAL    OUTDOOR    TRAINING.  215 

experiences  and  lessons  of  the  many  wars  and  expe- 
ditions in  which  the  British  army  has  been  engaged 
during  the  past  century  or  more  exists.  Such  a 
work,  well  written,  is  a  desideratum.  The  enemies 
against  whom  we  have  fought  since  the  days  when 
a  few  hundred  French  Canadians  and  American 
Indians  defeated  and  half  destroyed  General  Brad- 
dock's  brigade  near  Fort  Duquesne  on  the  Alleghany 
have  taught  our  Generals  and  our  troops  many  stern 
and  salutary  lessons.  Red  Indians,  Gurkhas,  Sikhs, 
Maoris,  Zulus,  and  Soudanese,  as  well  as  Pathans 
and  Boers,  have  taught  us  to  more  than  respect 
their  martial  qualities,  their  mobility,  courage,  dlan, 
skill,  astuteness,  cunning,  and  energy.  The  Afridis 
in  Tirah  proved  themselves  adepts  at  guerilla  war- 
fare ;  for,  while  incessantly  harrying  our  troops,  they 
rarely,  if  ever,  exposed  themselves  to  heavy  loss. 
It  is  true  that  we  penetrated  and  laid  waste  their 
country,  but  at  a  cost  of  life  more  serious  to  our- 
selves than  to  them.  If  it  is  a  question  of  the 
honours  of  the  war,  we  must  in  fairness  confess  that 
they  were  divided.  It  was  not  our  policy  to  annex 
Tirah.  It  remains  independent.  Our  supremacy  in 
South  Africa  was,  on  the  other  hand,  essential  to  the 
stability  of  our  empire.  We  had  both  to  subjugate 
and  annex.  The  task  was  not  accomplished  without 
numerous  checks,  surprises,  and  reverses,  each  one 
of  which,  if  studied,  has  its  lesson  to  teach.  It  was 
a  nation  of  mounted  infantry  that  taught  us  these 
lessons.* 

*  Vide    National  Review,  July,    1900,    p.    S18,  ct  sqq.  ;    and  the 
Weekly  Times  of  March  30,  1900. 


2l6  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

If  the  military  education  of  the  youth  of  the 
country  leaves  something  to  be  desired,  so  too 
does  the  internal  system  of  training  in  the  Army. 
For  a  few  years  in  the  seventies  the  results  of  a 
petty  and  carelessly  conducted  examination  were 
allowed  to  deprive  young  officers  of  one  or  two 
years'  service  absolutely.  That  injustice  worked 
its  own  condemnation  in  five  or  six  years ;  but 
the  reign  of  examination  is  still  supreme.  Does 
it  justify  itself?  The  Staff  College  is  held  to 
represent  the  highest  standard  of  military  educa- 
tion in  the  British  Army,  and  the  graduate  of  that 
college  is  regarded  as  a  man  marked  for  special 
or  Staff  employ.  Now  it  is  permissible  to  say  that 
the  experiences  of  Tirah  and  South  Africa  have  not 
justified  the  pretensions  of  the  Staff  College  to  be 
regarded  as  par  excellence  the  training  school  of  the 
Army  for  high  command  in  the  field.  Theoretical 
education  is  of  no  avail  if  the  recipient  is  not 
qualified  to  apply  it  practically.  The  perfection 
of  desk-work  will  not  make  a  soldier  or  a  General. 
One  of  the  most  undesirable  features  of  the  system 
of  examination  for  entrance  to  and  promotion  in 
the  Army  is  its  association  with  "  cramming."  The 
War  Office  would  do  well  to  discourage  as  far  as 
possible  army  crammers.  They  do  no  good  to  the 
Army,  rather  the  reverse.* 

Whatever  faults  may  be  found  with  our  military 
system  and  the  conduct  of  our  wars,  the  fact  remains 
that  no  other  power  in  the  world  could  have  put 
*  See  Note  B,  p.  220. 


''MISTAKE   IN    WAR?'  217 

240,000  men  into  South  Africa  and  kept  and  fed 
them  there.  This  is  a  powerful  answer  to  any 
criticism.  Many  writers  seem  to  assume  the  hypo- 
thesis that  perfection  of  system  and  of  generalship 
is  attainable.  The  conception  of  a  perfect  army 
and  perfect  organization  and  leading  is  purely 
academic  and  Utopian.  The  path  of  reform  is  no 
doubt  paved  with  aspirations  after  the  ideal ;  but 
it  is  practical  and  usually  bitter  experience  that 
works  reform.  If  any  Englishman  conceives  that 
"  Mistake  in  War"  is  a  monopoly  of  British  general- 
ship, let  him  read  a  paper  under  that  title  by  Lieut. - 
Colonel  F.  N.  Maude,  in  CornJdll  for  April  last. 
Its  few  pages  are  more  eloquent  and  convincing 
than  the  columns  of  comment  and  criticism  which 
appeared  in  the  Press  during  and  after  Tirah,  and 
during  the  war  In  South  Africa.  Happily,  amid  all 
that  varies,  and  invites  armchair  criticism,  one  thing, 
by  the  consensus  of  all  opinion,  remains  constant — 
viz.  the  courage  and  devotion  to  duty  of  the  British 
soldier.  South  Africa,  the  Soudan,  and  Tirah  have 
alike  proved  it.  If  South  Africa  has  had  some 
touches  of  the  "  picnic "  about  it,  Tirah  had  none. 
It  was  from  first  to  last  the  stern  reality  of  war. 
In  Blackwood's  Magazine  for  last  May  (p.  742)  is 
quoted  an  expression  of  opinion  by  the  late  Com- 
mander-in-Chief in  India,  and  General  Commanding 
the  Forces  in  Tirah,  Sir  William  Lockhart,  which 
harmonizes  most  thoroughly  with  the  pride  that  the 
Nation  feels  in  the  Army  which  has  not  only  estab- 
lished British  supremacy  in  South  Africa,  but  has 


2l8  JOHN  HAUGIITON. 

also  shown  the  world  what  the  military  and  maritime 
power  of  the  British  Empire  can  do.  The  opinion 
is  this  :  "  What  gave  me  the  greatest  satisfaction 
is  the  proof  the  Tirah  expedition  afforded  that 
the  British  soldier  can  fight  as  well  as  the  British 
soldier  fought  in  the  Crimea  and  the  Peninsula." 

These,  among  the  last  words  written  or  spoken 
by  Sir  William  Lockhart,  require  no  comment ; 
they  speak  for  themselves. 

The  year  1900  has  removed  from  our  midst  two 
men  who  have  figured  prominently  as  frontier 
soldiers  during  the  last  half-century;  both  Scotch- 
men, both  winners  of  the  blue  riband  of  the  Indian 
Service,  the  Commander-in-Chief-ship  in  India.  I 
speak  of  Sir  Donald  Stewart  and  Sir  William  Lock- 
hart.  The  baton  of  field-marshal,  left  vacant  by 
Sir  Donald  Stewart's  death,  has  passed  to  another 
Indian  officer  of  unequalled  fame  on  the  frontier, 
Sir  Neville  Chamberlain.  The  memoirs  of  these 
three  distinguished  soldiers,  if  written  and  well 
written,  will  constitute  a  history  of  North- West 
frontier  warfare  for  the  last  half  -  century.  The 
memoir  that  I  now  brinof  to  an  end  is  the  record 
of  but  one  expedition,  and  of  the  career  of  one 
comparatively  junior  officer.  I  have  written  it  in 
the  firm  conviction  that  the  memory  and  example 
of  Colonel  Haughton  deserve  to  be  remembered 
and  kept  alive  in  the  Army.  To  those  who  knew 
him  best,  he  was  a  valued  friend  ;  to  those  whom 
he  commanded,  a  trusted  leader.  What  a  compara- 
tive stranger  thought  of  him  may  be  gathered  from 


A    VALUED    FRIEND,   A    TRUSTED   LEADER.       2  10 

this  letter,   written   by   General   Lord    jMethuen   in 
September,  i899,to  a  relative  of  Colonel  Haughton — 

"  He  struck  me  as  one  of  the  finest-looking  men  I  have 
ever  seen,  and  his  charm  of  manner  never  seemed  to  leave 
him.  His  coolness  under  fire  and  the  manner  in  which  he 
exposed  himself  was  the  admiration  of  every  one,  and,  I 
am  quite  certain,  must  have  influenced  the  Afridis  as  well 
as  ourselves.  I  can  say  no  more,  except  that  his  end  was 
full  worthy  of  his  life." 

It  would  be  most  interesting  to  know  from  the 
lips  of  the  Afridis  themselves  what  impression 
Colonel  Hauo^hton  did  make  on  them.  His  com- 
manding  stature,  his  coolness,  his  bravery,  the 
charmed  life  which  (like  Skobeleff)  he  seemed  to 
bear,  the  capacity  and  resource  which  foiled  their 
tactics, — these  must  have  impressed  them.  What 
he  was  to  the  men  whom  he  commanded,  we  know. 
His  name  will  long  be  remembered  by  the  regiment 
that  he  commanded  and  by  the  Sikhs  generally. 
He  seems  to  have  in  some  degree  possessed,  like 
John  Nicholson  and  John  Jacob,  qualities  which 
engender  in  the  hearts  of  the  natives  of  India  a 
feeling  stronger  than  love  and  respect — a  spirit  of 
worship.  The  close  of  this  nineteenth  century  has 
set  before  the  public  memoirs  of  these  three  men, 
each  a  man  of  mark,  each  bearing  the  same  time- 
honoured  Christian  name.  From  a  study  of  the 
characters  and  careers  of  this  trio,  the  officers  of  the 
Indian  Army  may  learn,  if  not  the  whole,  at  least 
the  best  part  of  the  duty  of  a  good  soldier.  John 
Nicholson  was  deified  in  the  Panjab  in  his  lifetime. 


2  20  JOHN  HAUGHTON. 

His  grave  at  Delhi  is  still  a  place  of  pilgrimage. 
John  Jacob  broke  the  power  of  the  Baluch  on  the 
Sind  Border.  He  died  at  Jacobabad  in  1858,  and 
is  buried  there.  To  his  tomb  come  the  descendants 
of  the  men  he  chastised,  to  pray  and  invoke  his 
spirit.  The  grave  of  John  Haughton  at  Peshawar 
will,  it  is  safe  to  predict,  be  a  spot  sacred  in  the  eyes 
of  the  warriors  of  the  Khalsa,  above  all  of  those 
serving  in  the  35th  and  36th  Sikhs.  His  was  an 
upright,  brave,  and  honourable  life,  as  was  that  of 
his  father  before  him,  as  were  also  those  of  his  two 
brothers,  Richard  and  Henry.  There  can  be  no 
more  valuable  legacy  to  posterity  than  such  an 
ancestral  record,  no  better  example  to  the  Army 
than  the  careers  of  such  men. 

Note  A  (to  p.  214).  A  few  instances  best  illustrate  my  meaning. 
In  Burma  in  i8S6  I  was  in  command  of  an  advanced  guard.  I  came 
on  tracks  that  suggested  the  proximity  of  the  enemy.  I  started  back 
to  inform  the  officer  commanding  the  column,  but  before  I  could  reach 
him  the  "advance"  was  sounded  on  a  trumpet.  The  enemy  (Kem- 
mendine  Prince  and  his  following)  escaped  us,  naturally. 

2.  On  another  occasion  a  column  was  sent  by  a  detour  to  surprise 
and  attack  a  strong  body  of  Burmese.  The  officer  in  command 
(a  Lieut.-Colonel)  allowed  his  troops  to  burn  all  the  deserted  villages 
en  route.    The  enemy,  it  is  needless  to  say,  was  not  surprised. 

When  officers,  some  reckoned  "  smart "  officers,  make  such 
astonishing  blunders  as  these,  it  is  obvious  that  some  counteracting 
education  is  needed. 

Note  B  (to  p.  216).  Efforts  are  sometimes  made  (vide  Times, 
22nd  August  last)  to  extol  "  cramming  "  at  the  expense  of  Public 
School  teaching.  The  Nation,  however,  knows  that  our  Public  Schools 
are  to  be  relied  on  to  give  a  sound  and  healthy  education,  moral, 
mental,  and  physical.  "  Cramming"  is  a  hot-house  system,  enervating 
to  the  brain,  and  unimproving  to  the  mind.  It  is  a  mere  stimulant. 
Public  School  education  is  food  and  tonic  combined. 


APPENDIX   A. 

Letter  written  by  Lieut.-Colonel  Haughton 
TO  General  Sir  Charles  Gough,  V.C, 
G.C.B.,  etc. 

Camp  Mamanai,  January  i6,  1898. 

My  dear  Sir  Charles, 

Many  thanks  for  your  letter  and  kind  con- 
gratulations on  the  performances  of  the  36th  Sikhs.  To 
me,  who  have  waited  impatiently  for  nearly  twenty-six 
years  for  a  chance  of  service,  it  is  indeed  gratifying  to  have 
had  command  of  the  regiment  in  a  fairly  hot  campaign. 
It  has  undoubtedly  been  a  trying  campaign,  but,  when 
one  looks  back  to  what  you  veterans  of  the  Sikh  wars  and 
Mutiny  did  in  the  way  of  fighting  and  marches,  then  we 
see  that,  so  far  as  fighting  is  concerned,  ours  has  been  by 
comparison  mere  child's  play. 

I  cannot  say  that  I  have  seen  anything  of  your  son, 
though  I  met  him  once,  not  knowing  that  he  was  your  son. 
His  Brigade  has  been  separated  from  us  a  good  part  of  the 
time,  and  when  camped  near  us,  we  did  not  see  much  of 
other  Brigades  in  so  large  a  camp. 

You  are  kind  enough  to  say  you  would  like  to  hear 
something  of  my  experiences  and  views,  so  you  must  not 
blame  me  if  I  bore  you.  As  regards  policy,  one  wants  to 
be  behind  the  scenes  really  to  judge,  yet  of  course  any  one 
who  thinks  cannot  help  coming  to  some  conclusion,  though 


22  2  APPENDIX  A. 

such  conclusion  may  be  worthless.  However,  having  been 
on  the  Samana  amongst  the  Orakzais  for  a  year,  I  had 
perhaps  more  opportunities  of  forming  an  opinion  than 
many  others.  I  don't  think  the  present  disturbances  can 
be  put  down  to  any  one  cause,  and  myself  I  do  not  think 
the  so-called  "  forward  policy  "  is  mainly  responsible.  There 
is  no  doubt  that,  amongst  other  causes,  the  Greek  defeat 
by  the  Turks  had  a  good  deal  of  effect,  and  was  used  by 
unscrupulous  persons  to  stir  up  disquiet.  From  letters 
found  in  a  Mullah's  house  in  Tirah,  it  appeared  that  the 
Afridis  believed,  or  at  any  rate  were  told,  that  the  English 
had  been  beaten  by  the  Turks — that  the  Russians  also  had 
gone  against  us,  and  that  the  Suez  Canal  was  blocked, 
and  we  could  not  get  any  troops  through.  I  believe  myself 
that,  without  any  direct  action,  our  friend  the  Amir  was 
not  sorry  that  we  should  have  a  thorn  in  our  sides,  and 
also  was  not  sorry  that  the  Afridis  should  get  punishment 
for  not  having  responded  to  his  claim  to  be  their  suzerain, 
and  consequently  he  connived  at  their  being  egged  on  by 
the  Afghans,  notably  by  the  Sipah  *  Salar.  Although  the 
Afridis  and  Orakzais  are  not  particularly  religious,  and 
have  themselves  said  that  the  tales  spread  by  the  Mullahs 
are  all  "  Mullayani  durogh,"  i.e.  Mullahs'  lies,  yet,  given 
any  feeling  of  disquiet,  the  elder  men  cannot  withstand 
the  Mullahs,  backed  by  the  young  bloods  who  are  generally 
spoiling  for  a  fight.  I  think,  with  the  Mullahs,  it  was  not 
only  fanaticism,  but  also  a  desire  not  to  be  cut  out  by  each 
other.  Thus  the  Haddah  Mullah,  who  had  been  looked 
on  as  the  leading  man  in  his  part  of  the  world,  found  him- 
self quite  eclipsed  by  the  Mad  Fakir,  and  at  once  set  to 
work  to  restore  his  own  prestige.  In  like  manner  IMullah 
Syed  Akbar  and  others  found  themselves  being  left  behind, 
and  so  tried  to  restore  their  dwindling  fame.     Then  again 

*  Ghulam  Haidar  Khan,  commanding  the  Amir's  forces  on  the 
north-eastern  frontier  of  the  Amir's  territory. 


,\ 


m 


V  ■  -<o. 


'  i 


\ 


APPENDIX  A.  223 

there  was  seditious  incitement  from  India,  when  we  had 
allowed  sedition  to  be  openly  preached,  and  I  fear  it  is  an 
undoubted  fact  that  there  are  seditious  societies  who  take 
any  and  every  opportunity  to  stir  up  ill-will  against  us. 
In  short,  as  it  was  no  one  thing  which  caused  the  Mutiny, 
so,  in  this  case,  there  were  a  great  variety  of  factors  at 
work  in  giving  rise  to  the  disturbances  on  the  frontier. 

I  do  not  think  the  Orakzais,  or  at  any  rate  the  greater 
part  of  them,  ever  had  their  hearts  in  it,  but  were  dragged 
in  by  the  Mullahs  and  by  the  Afridis.  On  the  Samana 
we  only  had  half  a  battalion  distributed  in  seven  posts 
spreading  along  eight  miles  of  crest.  Nevertheless,  if  we 
had  had  a  couple  of  mountain  guns,  we  could  not  only 
have  completely  held  our  own,  but  thrashed  the  enemy 
had  they  come  on  the  Samana,  which  I  doubt  whether 
they  would  have  done,  Saragarhi,  certainly,  was  a  rotten 
little  post,  but  I  must  confess  that  I  did  not  expect  it  to 
be  regularly  attacked  in  the  way  it  was,  as  I  did  not  think 
the  enemy  would  consider  its  capture  worth  the  great  loss 
they  were  bound  to  and  did  suffer.  A  great  deal  has  been 
said  about  Saragarhi,  and,  as  far  as  pluck  goes,  no  one 
could  have  done  more  than  the  poor  fellows  who  fought  to 
the  last  gasp  ;  but,  personally,  I  think  much  more  highly 
of  the  sortie  from  Gulistan,  which  was  worthy  of  the  best 
traditions  of  the  Sikhs  and  of  the  Indian  army.  I  think 
Government  have  made  a  mistake  in  having  delayed  giving 
a  single  reward  for  that.  I  consider  every  one  of  the 
sortie  party  should  have  got  the  order  of  merit,  and  that 
as  soon  as  possible.  Doubtless  Government  will  give 
some  orders  of  merit,  but  bis  dat  qui  cito  dat  is  a  good 
motto  with  soldiers  and  natives,  and  some  recognition 
would  have  been  very  encouraging  to  the  regiment  in  the 
subsequent  expedition. 

As   regards  the  Tirah   expedition,   I  think   there   has 
been  much  very  unfair  criticism  in  the  Indian  papers.     At 


2  24  APPENDIX  A. 

the  same  time,  I  think  the  general  impression  in  the  force 
is  that  things  would  have  been  better  managed  had  Sir  W. 
Lockhart  not  been  in  such  bad  health.  He  has  constantly 
been  down  with  fever,  etc,  and  I  believe  has  really  been  ill 
all  the  time. 

The  astonishing  and  blood-curdling  accounts  that  one 
sees  in  some  of  the  home  papers  would  be  very  amusing,  if 
one  did  not  know  that  they  made  one's  people  at  home 
anxious.  On  this  show  (I  mean  the  Tirah  in  contradistinc- 
tion to  the  many  others  of  which  I  cannot  speak)  the 
native  troops  and  the  Indian  Generals  have  certainly  shown 
up  well  on  all  occasions.  .  .  . 

Nothing  could  have  been  better  or  finer  than  some  of 
the  British  regiments,  especially  the  King's  Own  Scottish 
Borderers  and  the  Gordons,  ,  .  .  Throughout  the  expedi- 
tion we  have  always  gone  where  we  wanted  and  done 
whatever  we  chose  to  do.  But  thanks  to  the  guerilla 
tactics  of  the  enemy,  and  to  their  being  so  well  armed 
(especially  with  Lee-Metfords  taken  from  British  troops), 
our  losses  have  been  out  of  all  proportion  to  the  amount  of 
actual  fighting  ;  but  it  is  difficult  to  see  how  this  could 
have  been  avoided.  I  don't  think  the  Afridis  have  really 
played  their  game  at  all  well.  Supposing  guerilla  tactics 
were  the  best,  they  might  have  done  infinitely  more 
damage  to  our  convoys,  which,  especially  at  first,  were  not 
well  managed  ;  but,  judging  by  Dargai,  I  doubt  if  guerilla 
tactics  were  their  best  game.  Thanks  to  the  nature  of 
the  country,  they  might  have  played  Dargai  over  a  dozen 
times,  and,  as  far  as  we  can  learn,  their  losses  were  trifling 
at  Dargai,  whereas  we  could  not  have  stood  that  sort  of 
thing  repeatedly.  Of  course,  whenever  we  moved,  if  even 
only  to  get  forage,  we  had  a  small  rear-guard  action  on 
the  way  back,  and  this  perpetual  retiring  before  the  enemy 
was  very  trying,  and  I  think  demoralizing  to  our  troops. 

I  must  confess  that  hitherto  I  had  always  regarded  the 


APPENDIX  A.  225 

Gurkha  as  rather  overrated.     I  have   quite  changed  my 
opinion.     The  3rd  Gurkhas  in  this  Brigade   have  simply 
been  splendid.      Of  course  I  can't  say  whether  the  other 
regiments  of   Gurkhas  are  as  good,   but  the   3rd   are   a 
grand  lot.     They  have,  I  think,  had  an  exceptionally  good 
lot  of  officers,  but  the  men  are  real  good  stuff.      I  think 
people  are  apt  to  forget  the  change  that  has  taken  place 
in  the  conditions  of  frontier  fighting.    Not  many  years  ago, 
for  instance,    in  a  case   like  the   march   down   the    Bara 
valley,  the  baggage  would  have  been  quite  safe  ;   that  is 
to   say,   the   enemy  could   not   have   attacked   it  without 
coming  down  from  the  hill,  and  thereby  exposing  them- 
selves.   Now  the  enemy,  with  Lee-Metfords  and  smokeless 
powder,  make  it  very  uncomfortable  in  the  valley  from  the 
tops  of  hills  up  to  eighteen  hundred  yards  on  either  side  ; 
and  as  we  could  not  see  them,  and,  thanks  to  the  smokeless 
powder,  could  not  even  see  where  they  were,  neither  our 
rifle  nor  artillery  fire  could  do  much  against  scattered  small 
groups.     Of  course,  heights  ought  to  be  and  were  crowned  ; 
but,  with  an  enemy  armed  with  modern  rifles,  this  entailed 
going  great  distances,  and  crowning  distant  heights  which, 
under  former  conditions,  might  have  been  ignored.     The 
work  of  the  advanced  and  rear  guards  was  enormous,  and 
the  enemy,  being  as  active  as  cats  and  knowing  the  ground, 
enabled  a  few  men  with  magazine  rifles  to  make  it  very 
hot  for  any  party  coming  to  crown  a  height ;  and,  of  course, 
by  the  time  the  party  got  to  the  top,  with  possibly  several 
casualties,  not  a  sign  of  the  enemy  was  to  be  seen,  till  a 
vicious  "  phit-phit "  or  two  of  a  Lee-Metford  told  you  he 
was   on    another  height  half  a  mile  away.     I  believe  the 
enemy  own  to  a  loss  of  one  hundred  and  sixty  on  the  13th 
and  14th  of  December,  and  I  fancy  their  loss  was  a  good 
deal  more. 

Among  several  points  that  have  impressed  me  forcibly 
are,  firstly,  the  value  of  esprit  de  corps  ;  and  secondl}-,  that 


2  26  APPENDIX  A. 

in  a  British  regiment,  as  well  as  in  a  native  regiment, 
almost  everything  depends  on  the  officers.  I  was  also 
very  much  struck  with  the  unfitness  to  march  of  most 
regiments,  especially  British  regiments,  at  the  beginning  of 
the  campaign.  Of  course,  at  the  end  of  the  hot  weather, 
there  is  some  excuse  for  this,  but  not  in  the  case  of  regi- 
ments that  have  been  quartered  in  the  hills, 

I  think  the  King's  Own  Scottish  Borderers  and  the 
Gordons  had  benefited  much  by  the  Chitral  campaign, 
although  there  was  so  little  fighting  in  it.  .  .  . 

Now  I  will  finish  this  scrawl,  which  is,  I  expect,  more 
than  you  bargained  for  when  you  asked  me  to  write. 

Hoping  you  are  well  and  having  a  good  time, 
I  am,  dear  Sir  Charles, 

Yours  sincerely, 

J.  Haughton. 


APPENDIX    B. 

"  SHINKAMAR— JANUARY   29,    1898." 

Five  miles  to  west  we  saw  the  spreading  jaws 
Of  that  dread  defile,  Shinkamar's  dark  pass, 
Whither  at  dawn  of  day  the  little  band, 
Four  hundred  hardy  dalesmen,  Yorkshire's  best, 
And  half  their  tale  of  Sikhs,  the  Khalsa's  pride, 
Threaded  their  rocky  way.     'Twas  now  full  noon, 
And  in  the  busy  camp  slow  whispers  passed — 
"  They  marched  at  five,  they  should  be  back  by  one. 
What's  the  last  message  ?     Is  there  any  news  ? 
What  says  the  general  ?  "     So  the  day  wore  on. 
Lining  the  wall,  we  stood  with  straining  eyes, 
And  each  man  asked  his  fellow  what  he  saw. 
Then  came  the  distant  helio's  fitful  flash  : 
"  Entangled  in  the  nullah — can't  get  out ; 
Cumbered  with  wounded,  and  they  press  us  close ; 
We  hold  our  own,  but  hardly — send  us  help." 
Sudden  the  bugle  blared,  the  camp  uprose, 
To  arms  the  Borderer  and  the  Gurkha  sprang, 
And  he,  their  leader  in  full  forty  fights, 
First  in  attack  and  rearmost  in  retreat, 
Led  now  the  way.     Too  late,  alas  !     Too  late  ! 
Scarce  had  the  common  rallying-point  been  reached, 
When  the  curt  message,  flag-sent,  came  to  hand, 
And  silent  men  learnt  how  John  Haughton  died. 
"Some  one  had  blundered,"  and  the  keen-eyed  foe, 
Quick  to  attain  the  vantage-point  in  flank, 


2  28  APPENDIX  B. 

Pressed  on,  a  hidden  host.     With  grim  intent 

The  veteran  Sikh  the  oft-fought  fight  renewed, 

The  stubborn  Tyke  in  dogged  silence  met 

His  baptism  of  fire.     Still  undismayed 

The  rear-guard  stood,  for  Haughton  bade  them  stand, 

And  Haughton's  voice  to  each  fresh  courage  gave, 

And  Haughton's  heart  each  doubtful  breast  inspired. 

And  Haughton's  self  ten  times  a  hero  proved. 

Vain  the  attempt !     Swarming  on  every  side, 

With  hard- won  rifle  and  with  rude  jezail, 

From  every  rock  the  howling  tribesmen  poured. 

Swift  came  the  end.     'Twas  thus  that  Haughton  died, 

And  with  him  Turing,  standing  by  his  chief. 

But  not  in  vain :  respited  by  the  stand, 

Slowly  and  wearily  the  column  reached 

The  open  plain  and  safely,  and  the  foe. 

Baulked  of  their  savage  lust,  turned  to  the  spoil. 

So  died  John  Haughton :  by  the  camp  fire's  gleam 

White  men  and  black  their  common  grief  outpoured, 

England  had  lost  a  hero ;    Sikhs  their  chief; 

The  camp  its  genius ;  each  and  all  a  friend. 

But  though  our  loss  struck  deeply,  what  of  them  ? 

The  widow  war-bereft,  the  orphaned  son. 

The  unseen  babe — unseen  but  not  unloved ; — 

We  thought  of  them ;  and  every  man  was  dumb. 

{The  Pioneer,  Allahabad,  January  30,  1899.) 


APPENDIX   C. 

AN   AMBULANCE   RESERVE  FOR   INDIA. 
(From  the  Times  of  1st  September,  1900.) 

To  THE  Editor  of  the  Times. 
Sir, 

One  of  the  mainstays,  we  may  even  say  tJie  main- 
stay, of  the  Royal  Army  Medical  Corps  in  South  Africa  has 
been  the  wise  measure  which  the  War  Office  adopted,  in 
sending  out  from  400  to  500  civilian  surgeons,  and  in 
utilizing  to  the  full  the  splendid  resources  and  material 
placed  at  its  disposal  by  the  British  Central  Red  Cross 
Committee,  which,  indeed,  has  now  become  an  integral 
part  of  the  War  Office.  A  minor,  but  none  the  less 
valuable,  aid  to  our  Army  Medical  Department  has  been 
found  in  the  ambulance  services  of  the  colonies.  Thanks 
to  all  this,  the  sick  and  wounded  of  our  Army  of  240,000 
men  have  been  spared  many  trials  and  sufferings  which 
otherwise  must  have  fallen  to  their  lot. 

Our  great  dependency,  India,  has  an  army  of  70,000 
British,  150,000  native,  30,000  volunteer,  and  25,000 
Imperial  Service  troops.  Of  these  100,000,  or  more,  may 
at  any  moment  be  called  upon  to  take  the  field,  while  the 
remainder,  left  to  garrison  India,  will  equally  require 
medical  attendance.  India  at  this  moment  possesses  no 
ambulance  reserve  whatever.  Let  South  African  experi- 
ences tell  what  will  be  the  lot  of  the  sick  and  wounded 
of  our  Indian  Army  in  a  possible  war  with  a  European 
Power,  and  in  regions  where  country  and  climate  and 
conditions  of  life  are  even  more  unfavourable  than  on  the 
veldt.  It  may  be  argued  that,  in  the  event  of  war,  Volun- 
teer ambulance  corps,  hospitals,  and  hospital  trains  would 


230  APPENDIX  C. 

be  at  once  organized.  Such  impromptu  productions  would 
not  be  one-half  as  useful  as  well-regulated  establishments 
which  had  learned  order  and  method  and  gained  experi- 
ence by  some  years  of  training  in  peace  time.  It  is  pre- 
cisely those  thirty  years  of  training  and  experience,  since 
the  days,  in  1870-71,  when  the  Order  of  St.  John  of 
Jerusalem  initiated  the  National  Society  for  the  Aid  of 
the  Sick  and  Wounded  in  War,  and  when  Sir  John  Furley 
worked  for  ten  months  in  the  cause  of  ambulance  in 
France,  that  has  now  enabled  the  British  Central  Red 
Cross  Committee  to  give  the  country  an  ambulance  reserve 
equivalent  to  about  one-third  of  the  entire  medical  estab- 
lishment of  the  Army  in  South  Africa.  So  impressed  has 
Professor  Chiene,  the  chief  surgeon  of  the  Edinburgh  Hos- 
pital, been  by  what  he  has  himself  seen  in  South  Africa 
that  he  has  (in  a  private  letter)  recorded  his  opinion  thus — 

"The  Corps  of  Civil  Surgeons,  Army  Reserve  nurses, 
and  orderlies  of  the  St.  John  and  St.  Andrew  Ambulance 
Associations  must  not  be  disbanded  after  the  war  is  over. 
An  Imperial  Medical  Reserve  must  be  formed  to  serve 
her  Majesty  in  future  wars.  I  would  aim  at  a  corps  of 
3000,  composed  as  follows :  1000  doctors  (physicians  and 
surgeons),  1000  nurses,  1000  orderlies.  To  belong  to  it 
would  be  an  honour  as  well  as  a  duty.  We  must  join  all 
these  three  elements,  common  to  every  hospital,  together 
under  a  Royal  corps.  If  her  Gracious  Majesty  will  only 
say  the  word  it  will  be  done,  and  well  done,  too." — 
Scotsman,  August  21,  1900. 

That  is  what  we  want  in  India — some  one,  some  person 
of  mark  and  will,  to  say  the  word,  to  give  the  initiative. 
For  twenty  years  now  isolated  efforts  have  been  made  at 
Bombay,  Simla,  Bangalore,  Jaipur,  Dalhousie,  and  doubt- 
less many  other  places,  to  establish  ambulance  instruction 
and  found  the  nucleus  of  an  ambulance  corps.  There  it 
has  ended.     Work  dependent  on  the  energy  of  one  or  two 


APPENDIX   C.  231 

individuals,  whose  services  may  at  any  time  be  diverted 
elsewhere,  cannot  acquire  permanence.  Some  more  stable 
influence  and  system  is  needed.  That  influence  must  be 
sought  among  those  who  have  authority,  and  that  system 
must  be  introduced  by  those  who  possess  power  and  com- 
mand adequate  resources.  There  is  in  India  a  very  wide 
field  for  ambulance  work  and  for  the  formation  of  an 
efficient  Ambulance  Reserve,  which  in  time  of  peace  will 
devote  itself  to  the  relief  of  plague,  pestilence,  famine, 
sickness,  and  every  form  of  accident ;  and  in  time  of  war 
will  aid  the  sick  and  wounded.  This  wide  field  includes,  or 
might  include,  all  Government  schools  and  colleges,  muni- 
cipalities, the  police  and  the  Volunteers,  manufacturing 
and  mining  centres,  the  States  of  native  chiefs,  and  the 
numerous  missions,  as  well  as  centres  and  corps  main- 
tained in  places  such  as  Calcutta,  Bombay,  Madras,  Simla, 
Poona,  Ootacamund,  Karachi,  Lahore,  Rawalpindi,  Ouetta, 
Meerut,  Delhi,  etc.,  where  a  more  or  less  considerable 
number  of  civilian  English  people — or,  to  use  the  local 
term,  Europeans — reside.  The  more  enlightened  natives, 
ladies  and  gentlemen,  are  beginning  to  take  an  interest  in 
ambulance  work.  The  Maharajah  of  Gwalior  has  given  a 
munificent  sum  to  fit  out  a  hospital  ship  for  China.  Native 
chiefs  possess  facilities  for  organizing  ambulance  transport 
corps.  The  medical  missionaries,  who  reside  in  many 
native  States,  are  the  very  men  to  give  ambulance  instruc- 
tion. A  knowledge  of  first  aid,  nursing,  and  hygiene  is 
calculated  to  produce  a  good  effect  on  the  native  character. 
It  is  a  means  to  an  end  that  the  missionary  who  aims  at 
the  education  and  reform  of  the  native  should  certainly 
utilize.  The  Government  of  India  does  not  avail  itself  of 
the  Hindus  and  Mussulmans  in  ordinary  Volunteer  corps. 
It  ought  to,  and  will,  do  so  in  Volunteer  ambulance  corps. 
In  time  of  war  some  thousands  of  trained  animals  and 
trained  stretcher-bearers  are  required  for  the  removal  of 


232  APPENDIX  C. 

the  sick  and  wounded  from  the  field  of  battle  to  the 
dressing-stations  and  field  hospitals,  and  thence  to  the 
base.  A  good  ambulance  system  would  provide  these 
animals  and  bearers.  Natal  sent  from  1500  to  2000  bearers 
to  Sir  Redvers  Buller  at  Colcnso. 

Such  is  the  field,  such  some  of  the  possibilities,  for 
ambulance  work  in  India.  Its  moral  influence  on  the 
native  cannot  fail  to  be  for  good.  Its  practical  utility  in 
peace  and  war  is  undeniable.  We  have  evidences  of  that 
in  South  Africa.  The  success  of  ambulance  work  in 
England  is  largely  due  to  the  support,  sympathy,  and 
energy  of  members  of  our  Royal  Family,  nobility,  and 
gentry.  It  is  earnestly  to  be  hoped  that  the  same  support, 
sympathy,  and  energy  may  ere  long  widen  the  sphere  of 
its  influence  and  embrace  India. 

As  I  bring  this  letter  to  a  close,  the  Times  of  Monday 
(August  20)  has  reached  me,  and  in  it  I  find  the  following 
telegram  from  Simla,  dated  August  19 — 

"  Owing  to  the  great  demands  of  the  hospitals  in  con- 
nection with  the  China  force,  it  is  probable  that  all  officers 
of  the  Indian  Medical  Service  on  leave  home  will  be  re- 
called. It  is  proposed  to  offer  temporary  employment  to 
retired  officers  in  the  same  service.  Every  effort  will  be 
made  to  equip  the  hospitals  thoroughly,  as  the  autumn  is 
an  unhealthy  season  in  North  China.  The  possibility  of 
the  plague  reviving  in  India  during  the  cold  weather 
renders  the  strengthening  of  the  medical  service  a  matter 
of  urgency." 

This  measure  is  necessitated  when  barely  20,000  men 
are  put  in  the  field.     What  will  happen  when  100,000  or 
more  are  mobilized  for  service  is  self-evident. 
I  am  your  obedient  servant, 
A.  C.  Yate, 

Major,  Indian  Staff  Corps. 

Culross  Park,  Culross,  N.B,,  August  21,  1900. 


INDEX. 


Abbott,  Captain  Augustus,  34 

Abbott,  Lieut. -Colonel  (isth  Sikhs), 
160,  162 

Afridis,  The,  115,  116,  ll?)  el  passim  ; 
clans,  150;  their  tactics,  115,  151, 
225 

Aksarai,  36 

Alderson,  Colonel,  214 

AH  Masjid,  196 

Alipore,  69 

Ambulance  Work  in  India,  186-7, 
and  Appendix  C 

Amir  Abdurrahman  Khan  of  Afghan- 
istan, 113,  222 

Amritsar,  105,  108 

Anderson,  Captain  (Bengal  Horse 
Artillery),  30 

Arcot,  76 

Arhanga  Pass,  148,  149 

Ashanti,  2IO 

Assam,  52,  53 


B 


Badakshan,  3^ 

Bagh,  124,  142,  151-2  (illustration), 

169,  173,  174.  181 
Bajgah,  31 
Bamian,  31,  37 

Baker,  Colonel  Charles,  V. C,  80 
Baker,  Mr.  E.  B.,  80 
Bannu,  107,  108,  iio 
Bara,  196,  197,  205 
Bara   Valley   and    River,    153,    170, 

Chap.  X.  passim 
Barikat,  36 

Barmby,  Rev,  J-,  D.D.,  107 
Barrackpore,  69,  70,  73,  79 
Barter,  Major,  197,  201 
Barton,  Captain,  121 


Batteries,  Royal  Artillery,  138,  139, 
141-2,  153,  169,  171,  189,  190,  197 

Bazar  Valley,  154,  194 

Beaufort,  Joan,  18 

Benares,  81,  86,  88-9 

Bengal  Dooars  Railway,  60 

Bengal  Native  Infantry,  59lh  (now 
8th  Bengal  Infantry),  20,  24  ;  31st, 
25-30 ;  54th,  55  ;  loth,  68  ciscqq .  ; 
34th,  70 ;  39th,  103-4 

Berwick,  Dr.,  51 

Bhutan  Terai,  57,  (War),  52-3 

Bismarck,  Prince,  79 

Blackwood's  Magazine,  217 

Blair,  Lieutenant  A.  K.,  119,  120 
(dangerously  wounded),  125,  140, 
205  (death) 

Bombay  Native  Infantry,  ist  Grena- 
diers and  Jacob's  Ritles,  84-5  ;  in 
the  relief  of  Kandahar,  95  ;  28th 
Pioneers,  169,  171-3,  189 

Broadfoot,  Lieutenant  William,  31,  33 

Broadfoot,  Major  George,  51 

Bridge,  Suspension,  the  first  built  in 
India  and  of  Indian  workmanship 
and  material,  19-20  (illustration) 

British  Central  Red  Cross  Committee, 
187,  229 

British  soldier,  becomes  a  naturalized 
Afghan,  105 

British  troops,  their  inexperience  of 
frontier  warfare,  157,  166,  208,  214. 
215,  226 

Brougham,  Dr.,  57,  58 

"  Brown  Bess,"  the  value  of,  34 

Brown,  Dr.  A.  II.,  Prcf. 

Browne,  Colonel,  V.C.,  66 

Brownfield,  Mr.  C,  57 

Bundelkhand  Service  Battalion,  52 

Burghley,  Cecil,  Lord,  15 

Burmese  War,  145,  1 7 1-2,  220 

Burnes,  Sir  Alexander,  33 


234 


INDEX. 


]>utlcr,  Dr.  Samuel,  Headmaster  of 

Slircwsl:)ury  School,  27 
Byrne,  Sergeant-Major,  33,  42,  43 


Cachar,  69-71 

Calcutta,  6g,  72 

Camljridge,  57 

Cambronne,  General,  7 

Campbell,  Dr.,  51 

Campbell,  Sir  Colin  (Lord  Clyde),  2, 

4,  115,  116 
Camp  of  Exercise,  Ambala-Delhi,  92, 

97-103 

Candler,  Rev.  H.,64 

Carr,  Major,  5tli  Punjab  Cavalry,  49 

Chagru  Kotal,  120 

Chagru  Valley,  118,  141 

Chamberlain,  Sir  Neville,  3,  76,  116, 
170,  218 

Charikar,  I,  32-48,  105 

Chaytor,  Colonel,  141,  143,  146,  155 

Chester,  Colonel,  55 

Chhota  Nagpur,  52,  62 

Chinese  War  (1900),  II3,  1 14,  210 

Chitral,  130 

Civil  and  Military  Gazette,  Pref. 

Codrington,  Captain,  32,  33-7,  41-3 

Colpoys,  Admiral  Sir  John,  16 

Colpoys-Griffith,  Admiral  Sir  Ed- 
ward, 16,  27 

Commines,  Philip  de,  208 

Cooch-Behar,  52-4 

Coriihill  Magazitie,  217 

Cossyah  hills  and  rebellion,  53 

Cotton,  Sir  Sydney,  3,  22-5,  34,  1 16 

Cotton,  Sir  Willoughby,  29 

Coulton,  Mr.  G.  G.,  206,  212 

Crag  picquet,  117 

Craster,  Lieutenant,  182 

Curzon  of  Kedleston,  Lord,  his 
dictum  on  journalistic  intelligence, 
207 

Custance,  Captain,  156,  162,  165 

D 

Dacca,  68 

Dalhousie,  Marquis  of,  3,  4 

Dargai,  141-3  ;  representations  of 
scenes  at,  by  war-artists  in  the 
Academy,  6,  7 

Deh-Afghan,  50 

Dennie,  Colonel,  13th  Foot,  31 

Des  Voeux,  Major  (now  Colonel), 
C.  H.,  68,  iig-40  passim,  155, 
163,  165,  188 

Desecration  of  places  sacred  to  Mussul- 
mans, 152-3 


Dhalipgarh,  130 

Dhar  (picquet),  1 17-18,  125,  135 

Diamond  Harbour,  70 

Diamond  Jubilee  in  India,  I13 

Dillon,  Major,  5 

Doaba,  132 

Dooars,  Western,  57-60,  67,  73 

Dorset  Regiment,  143,  153,  164,  165, 

166-7,  189 
Dost  Mohammed  Khan,  Amir,  31-2 
Dowdall,  Lieutenant,  Yorkshire  Light 

Infantry,  200 
Downman,  Major,  185-7 
Dufferin  and  Ava,  Marquis  of,  99-  lOO 
Duke  of  York's  School,  210 
Durand,  Sir  Henry,  4,  27 
Dwatoi,  Chap.  IX. 


Earle,   Major,    Yorkshire   Light    In- 
fantry, 204 
Edwardes,  Sir  Herbert,  23,  76 
Elphinstone,  General,  33,  37,  38,  50, 

51 
English  prisoners,  spared  by  Afghans, 

158 
Eyre,  Sir  Vincent,  27,  36,  37,  50 


Famine,  Madras,  68,  69 

Fashoda,  1 14 

Ferozpur,  104-8 

Firth,  Major-General,  92 

Frontier  posts,  their  weak  points,  126, 
127,  130,  137 

Frontier  warfare,  flanking  disposi- 
tions in,  171-2,  177-9,  1S8, 191, 225 

Furley,  Sir  John,  230 


Galai  Khel,  iS8,  190,  191 

Gandaki,  146 

Gandao,  197 

Garrow  Hills  and  Tribe,  53-4 

Gaselee,  Sir  Alfred,  146,  148,  186 

George  HI.,  his  dictum  on  Sir  John 

Colpoys,  16 
Ghazni,  29,  3 1 
Ghilzais,  30 

Ghoomsoor  rebellion,  52 
Ghulam  Haidar  Khan,  159,  222 
Gogra,  118,  126,  134 
Goldney,  Colonel,  107-8 
Gordon,   General   ("  Chinese  "),  90, 

211 


INDEX. 


;5 


Gordon    Highlanders,  7,  21-2  (75th 

Regiment  in  the  Mutiny),  142,  185, 

187,  189,  224,  226 
Gough,  General  Sir  Charles,  196 
Gough,  Lord,  42 
Grant,  Dr.,  35,  43,  48 
Gulistan   (Fort   Cavagnari),  117-40, 

222 
Gurkha  or  4th  Battalion,  Shah  Shuja's 

contingent,  30  et  sqt/.,  105 
Gurkhas,  2nd,  160-1,  171,  177 
Gurkhas,  3rd,  151,  169,  171,  190,  191, 

193.  197-S,  203,  225 
Gwalior,    Maharajah,    (Scindia)    of, 

229 


H 


Hadda  Mulla,  159,  222 

Haileybury  (H.E.I.C.S.   Academy), 

16,  17 
Hall,  Lieutenant,  204 
Hammond,     CoIonL-l     (5th     Punjab 

Cavalry),  49 
Hammond,  General,  183,  192,  194 
Hangu,  116,  117-34 
Hannyngton,  General,  86,  87 
Hanrahan,     Quartermaster-Sergeant, 

33.  39,  42 . 

Hardinge,  Viscount,  41 

Haslam,  2nd  Lieutenant,  Royal  En- 
gineers, 128 

Haughton,  Alderman  John,  of  Stam- 
ford (sixteenth  century),  15 

Haughton,  Henry  Lawrence,  14,  26, 
Co-i,  62,  70,  75,  86-8 

Haughton,  Sir  Graves  Chamney 
(eminent  Orientalist),  17-18 

Haughton,  Miss,  63 

Haughton,  Susan,  25 

Haughton,  Richard,  Professor  at 
Addiscombe,  16,  17,  63 

Haughton,  Richard,  Pioneer  of  tea- 
planting,  14,  16,  25,  57-60,67,  70, 

73 
Haughton,  General  John  Colpoys ; 
sympathy  between  him  and  his 
sons,  5,  69-70,  96  ;  in  operations 
against  Kelat  (1839),  29  ;  at  battle 
of  Tazee  (1S40),  30  ;  joins  Gurkha 
Pattalion  as  Adjutant  (1840),  30-2  ; 
siege  of  Charikar,  34-48 ;  narrow 
escapes,  43,  45  ;  treacherously  cut 
down,  47;  escape,  49-51;  im- 
prisonment at  Kabul,  17,  51  ;  sub- 
sequent services,  52-4 ;  C.S.L, 
52  ;  Government  Resolution  on  his 
services,  53  ;  failing  health,  104  ; 
death  in  1S87..  105-6;  Press 
notices  of,  54-6 


Haughton,  John,  military  genius  in- 
herited ;  a  valued  friend,  3  ;  his 
motto  in  frontier  warfare,  3 ;  his 
character,  4-5,  12-13  ;  firm  but  not 
aggressive,  112  ;  revered  in  his  regi- 
ment, 5  ;  encomium  by  Sir  W.  S. 
A.  Lockhart  and  Sir  George  White, 
10  ;  the  "  Ney  "  of  Tirah,  11  ;  his 
commanding  stature,  14 ;  lineage, 
14-18;  "John"  or  "Jack,"  62; 
schooldays,  63-4 ;  enters  Sand- 
hurst, 64  ;  service  in  24th  and  72nd 
Regiments,  66-7  ;  joins  lOth  Bengal 
Native  Infantry,  68  ;  employed  on 
Famine-relief  duty  in  Madras,  and 
thanked  by  Government,  68  ;  ac- 
companies loth  Bengal  Native  In- 
fantry to  Assam,  69-72  ;  engage- 
ment, 79-80  ;  marriage,  88  ;  birth 
of  son  and  death  of  wife,  89 ; 
Brigade-I\Iajor,  92,  97-103  ;  sends 
his  boy  home,  96 ;  Wing  Com- 
mander, 39th  Bengal  Native  In- 
fantry, 103  ;  Wing  Commander 
35th  Sikhs,  104 ;  studies  Russian 
in  Russia,  106  ;  Staff  Captain  In- 
telligence Division,  106 ;  Major, 
106 ;  Second-in-Command  35th 
Sikhs,  107  ;  Commandant  36th 
Sikhs,  107  ;  second  marriage,  107  ; 
daughter  born,  108 ;  defends 
Samana,  116-40;  gallant  leading 
at  Saran-Sar  and  Tscri-Kandao, 
Chap.  VIII.  ;  Dwatoi  recon- 
naissance, three  days'  rear-guard 
duty.  Chap.  IX.  ;  Bara  Valley 
march,  Chap.  X.  ;  condemns  the 
journalistic  criticism  on  the  Tirah 
Campaign,  143,  195,  223-4  ;  death 
at  Shinkamar,  Chap.  XI. 

Havelock,  Sir  Henry,  4,  42 

Hawkins,  Rev.  C.  II.,  25 

Hay,  Captain,  31-2 

Herat,  35  ;  defence  of,  92-5 

Hindu  Kush,  passes  of,  31-2 

Holmes,  Captain  II.  R.,  1 14- 1 5 

Hughes,  Lieutenant,  200 

Hunter,  Major  Gunning,  Pref.,  89, 
100,  103,  no 

Hutchinson,  Colonel,  Pref. 


I 


Imperial  Service  Troops,  77 
Indian  Army  Regulations,  92-3 
Indian  Army  and  Staff  Corps,  75-71 

86 
Indian  Government,  its  unpreparcd- 

ness  in  1885..  92-3 


236 


INDEX. 


Jacob,  General  John,  76,  214,  219 

Jalalabad,  32,  192 

Jalpaiguri,  57,  60,  67-9 

James,  Mr.  Lionel,  I'ref. 

Jamrud,  196 

Jezail,  the  Afghan  rifle,  34 

Jhind  Infantry,  1S9 

Journalism,  re  the  Army,  its  inac- 
curacy, 167-8,  195,  207,  213, 
223-4 

Jyntia  rebellion,  52-3 


Kabul,  31-2,  33,  37-8,  41,  46,  49 

Kafiristan,  154 

Kajurai  plain,  194-6 

"Kandao,"  meaning  of,  150 

Karana,  184-5 

Karappa,  iiS,  135,  142-6 

Kardarrah,  33,  37 

Kaye,  Sir  William,  27,  34,  36,  37 

Keane,  29,  31 

Kelat,  storming  of  (1839),  29 

Kempster,    Brigadier-General,     142, 

148,     159-62,      170,     Chap.      X. 

passim. 
Kennedy,  81-2 
Khangarbur,  124,  145 
Khauki  Valley,   116,    118,   124,   133, 

135,  143 
Khwaja  Mir  Khan's  Fort,  34,  37,  44 
Khyber  and  Khyber  Rifles,  n6,  121, 

194 
Kidderpore,  70 
Kohat,  108,  no 
Kohistanis,  32-6 
Kohistan  Rangers,  33,  38 
Kurram  Valley,  117,  125,  139 


Lakarai  Kotal,  189,  190-2,  19S 

Lakka,  1 18-19 

Lawrence,  Sir  Henry,  26,  76 

Lawrence,  John,  23 

Lewarne,  Captain,  160-4 

Lillie,  Lieutenant,  Royal  Irish  Fusi- 
liers, 128 

Lockhart,  Sir  W.  S.  A.,  10,  76,  143, 
146,  149,  Chaps.  VIII.,  IX., 
and  X.,  217-18;  his  high  reputa- 
tion as  a  frontier  soldier,  180 
(note)  ;  bad  health,  195,  224  ;  en- 
comium on  the  British  troops  in 
Tirah,  218 


Lockhart,  Fort,  117-40 

Low,     Lieutenant     C.     R.    (Indian 

Navy),  27,  37 
Lughmani  Fort,  35-9 
Lumsden,  Sir  Harry,  2,  76,  91,   116, 

214 


M 

MacDonald,     Sir     Claude,      Pref., 

210-11 
McGrath,  Teresa,  119,  134  ;  receives 

Royal  Red  Cross,  140 
MacGregor,  Sir  Charles,  8 
McLeod,  Sir  Donald,  20-1 
Macmillan,  Mr.  M.,  63 
Macnaghten,  Sir  William,  32-8 
Macpherson,  Sir  Herbert,  49,  92 
McSherry,  Major,  30-1 
Maddock,  Sir  Herbert,  20 
Mad  Fakir,  the,  222 
Maidan  Valley,  149,  150,  159-70 
Maiwand,  battle  of,  31,  84-5 
Malcolm,  Captain  John,  115 
Malta,  66 

Mamanai,  192-S,  202,  221 
Manchester  Regiment,  151 
Mansfield,  Rev.  Father,   Pref. 
Man  Singh,  49,  50 
March,  orders  for  and  order  of,  171, 

1S8-90 
Marrable,  Captain,  204 
Mastura  Valley,  147-9,  160 
Mathias,  Colonel,  7,  189 
Maude,  Lieut. -Colonel  F.  N.,  217 
Maule,  Lieut.,  33,  37 
Mehrab  Khan  of  Kelat,  29-30 
Methuen,  Lord,  72,  219 
Militia,  border,  120-1 
Miranzai  Valley,  116-17,  132 
Mir  Masjidi,  35-7 

Missions  and  Ambulance  Work,  231 
Mohammed  Akbar  Khan,  32-3,  50-1 
Mohan  Bir,  49 
Morrison,  Dr.,  Peking  correspondent 

of  the  Ti»ies,  21 1 
Moss,  Rev.  Prebendary  H.  W.,  Pref. 
Mulla  Sayad  Akbar,  151,  159,  222 
Mullins,  Rev.  G.  H.,  Pref.,  64 
Munn,    Lieutenant,     Adjutant    36th 

Siklis,  119, 125, 127,  137,  13S,  156, 

163-5 


N 

Naga  War,  69 

Napier,  Sir  Charles,  4,  7,  29 

Napoleon  I.,  195 


INDEX. 


237 


National  Review,  212,  216 

Native  loyalty  and  disloyalty,  II3 

Newcastle,  Co.  Wicklow,  16 

Ney,  Marshal,  11 

Nicholson,  John,  23,  76,  214,219 

Nijrao,  32,  36 

Norman,  Sir  Henry,  76,  115 

Northampton  Regiment,  141 -2,  Chap. 

VIII. 
North-west  Frontier  of  India,  115 
North  -  west     Frontier    Agency     of 

Bengal,  53 
Nott,  Sir  William,  17,  160 


Omdurman,  113 
Orakzais,  116,  118-35 
Order  of  Merit,  223 
Outram,  Sir  James,  4,  30,  42 


Palmer,  Colonel  C.  H.,  2,  13,  73>  87, 

92,  100,  103 
Palmer,  General  Sir  Power,  194 
Panjab  Infantry,  2nd,  135,  189 
Panthay,  the,  145 
Parker,    Captain,     Royal    Artillery, 

splendid   inarch  of  his    Mountain 

Battery,  139 
Pashtu  (Afghan  language),  IIO 
Peking,  defence  of  Legation  at,  210- 

II 
P.  and  O.  Bokhara  and  Pekin,  67 
Peshawar,  67,  108,  iio,  117,  205 
Phayre,  Sir  Robert,  61 
Pioneer,  Pref.,  74,90,  130,  205 
Plassy,  76 

Plunkett,  Captain,  151 
Political  Service,  31,  38,  41 
Pollock,  Sir  George,  7,  17,  48,  50-1 
Poor  Law  Schools,  210 
Pottinger,  Major  Eldred,  17,  27,  35- 

50 
Prall,    Surgeon- Captain,    125,    134, 

140 
Pratt,     2nd    Lieutenant    PL,    Royal 

Engineers,  125,  134,  140,  165 
Presgrave,  Jessie  Eleanor,  mother  of 

Lieut-Colonel  John  Haughton,  25, 

52 
Presgrave,  Colonel  Duncan,  18-20 
Presgrave,  Captain  Duncan  Kyd,  14, 

19-25 
Press,  military  criticism  in  the,   143, 
167-8,  195,207,  213,  223-4 


R 


Rajgul  Valley,  183 
Ramghar  Battalion,  52 
Rattray,  Lieutenant,  33-7 
Rawlinson,  Major  (Sir)  Henry,  35 
Regiments     (Foot),    24th,    66,    75  ; 

12nd,  67,  75  ;  66th,  85  ;  zgth,  86- 

8 ;  g6th,  99  ;  14th,  99 
Rhode,  Robert,  63-4 
Richardson,  Colonel,  139 
Rising  on    the  North-west  Frontier 

(1897),  114,222 
Roberts,  Lord,  of  Kandahar,  76,  83, 

90,  92,  102 
Rodwell,  Major  E.  H.,  II 
Rose,  Ensign,  33,  42-8 
Rose,  Major,  197 

Rosseter,   Colonel  J.  II.,  Royal   Ar- 
tillery, 64 
Rowcroft,  Captain,  160 
Royal  Hibernian  School,  210 
Royal    United    Service   Institution, 

Pref.,  209 
Russo-Afghan  Boundary  Settlement 

(1884-5),  93-5.  145 
Ruxton,  Colonel,  88-9 


Saddozai,  Afghan  dynasty,  30 

Saifuklarra,  118,  119 

St.  John  of  Jerusalem   in  England, 

Order  of,  187 
Sale,  Lady,  51 

Sale,  Sir  Robert,  32,  166,  192 
Salisbury,  Ensign,  33,  39 
Samana,  The,  108,  116-42,  222 
Sampagha  Pass  and  Valley,  118,  124, 

146-9 
Sandana, 184 
Sangar  and  Sartop  picquets  (Samana), 

I17-18,  125,  135 
Sappers  and  Miners,   17CK3,  189 
Saiagarhi,    defence   of,   45,    117-40, 

154,  223 

Saran-sar,  150-59,  (rough  sketch,  156) 

Scottish  Borderers,  King's  Own,  146, 

148,  169,  171-4,  182-90,  203,  224, 

226 

Searle,  Captain  C.  T.  A.,  36th  Sikhs, 

148-9 
Selwyii,  Rev.  E.  C,  B.D.,  Pref.,  64 
Seppings,  Colonel,  197-202 
ShadwcU,  Captain,  Pref.,  143 
Shaloba,  172 
Shan  Slates,  145 
Sher  Khel,  1S4-8,  190 
Shinkamar  Pass,   189,   194-6,  Chap. 
XL,  227-8 


238 


INDEX. 


Shrewsbury  School,  Pref.,  210 
Shuja'-ud-daulah,  Shah,  30-5 
Sidney,  Sir  Philip,  Pref. 
Sikhs,  jj-//^  andj6t/i,  Pref.,  65,  IO4-7, 

no,     114,    205  ;    36th,     118-205 

passim  ;  gallant    acts    of,    122-3, 

128,  131  ;  /St,  99  ;  3rd,  142  ;  141/1, 

99  ;  ^Ji^h  153-7.  160-7  ;  as  border 

colonists,  121 
Skobeleff,  General,  11,  219 
Skrine,   Rev.  Canon  J,,   Warden  of 

Glcnalmond,  63 
Sleeman,  Sir  William,  20 
Soldiers,    British   (old    or    young  ?), 

90-1 
South  African  War,   iii,   113,   114, 

Chap.  XII.,  App.  C. 
Stacpoole,  Dr.,  64 
Staff  College,  72,  98,  216 
"Stalky  and  Co.,"  Pref. 
Stamford  (Rutlandshire),  15 
Stanford,  Mr.  E.,  Pref. 
Stewart,  Sir  Donald,  76,  82-4,  92,  218 
Stocqueler,     Mr.,     Editor     of      the 

Englishman,  27-9,  37 
Sullivan,  Captain  E.  L.,  36th  Sikhs, 

50 
Sumbalpor  and  Sungboom,  53 
Swaikot,  188-9,  192 
Syghan,  31 
Sylhet,  71 
Symons,  Sir  Penn,  179,  194 


Talai  spur,  141-4 
Tavoy,  60 

Tazee,  battle  of  (1840),  30 
Temple,  Sir  Richard,  115 
Thring,  Rev.  Edward,  57,  63 
Times,  The,  167,  211,  216,  229-32 
Times  of  India,  The,  Pref.,  115,  178 
Tirah,  114,  \i,\  et passim 
Tirich  Mir,  154 

"  Tom  Brown's  Schooldays,"  Pref. 
Transport  difficulties,  143-5 
Tsalai,  118-20 
Tseri-Kandao,  150,  159-67 
Turing,  Lieutenant  (36th  Sikhs),  164- 
5,  1S2,  194,  200-1  ;  death,  204-5 


U 


Udny,  Sir  Richard,  155 
Uganda,  114 

Uppingham  School,  Pref.,  57,  63-5, 
{Magazine),  210 


Van     Someren,    Second    Lieutenant 

(36th  Sikhs),  181-2,  203 
Venour,  Captain,  176-7 
Victoria  Cross,  8 


W 

Wales,  H.R.H.  the  Prince  of,  81 

Walker,  Lieutenant,  200 

Waran  Valley,  159-60 

Warre,  Dr.,  Pref.,  206,  209 

Watson,  Major  (29th  Foot),  88 

Wellington,  Duke  of,  7,  195  ;  his 
strong  condemnation  of  political 
interference  with  military  opera- 
tions, 38 

West,  Lieutenant  (killed),  191 

Westmacott,  Sir  Richard,  141,  146, 
153-9,  Chaps.  IX.,  X.,  XI. 
passim ;  skilled  handling  of  rear- 
guard by,  157,  178,  193 

Wheeler,  Lieutenant,  37 

White,  General  Sir  George,  10,  157, 

193 

Wilkinson,  Mr.  Spenser,  Pref. 

Wiltshire,  General,  29 

Wolseley,  General  Sir  G.  B.,  Pref., 

100,  loi,  103 
Wolseley,  Viscount,  90,  loo 


Yeatman-Biggs,  General,  124-7,  132- 
40,  188,  192,  194 

Yorkshire  Light  Infantiy,  2nd  Bat- 
talion, Chap.  Xl.  passim 

Yorkshire  Regiment,  146,  17 1-9 


THE    END. 


LONDON  :    PRINTED    BY   WILLIAM   CLOWES   AND   SONS,    LIMITED, 
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